Sociologists try to explain how society orders itself but there are
many different theories for this, which often conflict with one
another. Some of these classic theories include Marxism,
Functionalism, and Interactionism. There are also more modern or
contemporary theories such as Feminism. Each sociological perspective
has different beliefs.
Marxists are concerned with the distribution of economic power and
wealth. They believe that society is in conflict between two classes.
Those classes are the Bourgeoisie; who own the means of production,
i.e. land and the Proletariat; who sell labour to these owners for
wages. The Proletariat are being exploited in order for the
Bourgeoisie to gain economic and cultural power over them; Marxists
believe this leads to antagonism, arguments and conflict between the
An example of this could be in a factory. The manager owns the
factory, which is a means of production, so he is a Bourgeoisie
whereas the factory workers are the Proletariat because they work for
the manager in exchange for wages.
Functionalists argue that society is organised much like the Human
Body. Everything must function correctly in order for society to work
as a whole, just like every organ in the body must function correctly
in order for the body to work as a whole.
They believe that social institutions such as Police, NHS, Church,
Schools, etc ensure that certain prerequisites are met and they must
all work together to produce a healthy society. Those prerequisites
are that people need to learn how to be part of society
(socialisation), people need t...
... middle of paper ...
... a particular group to see how they interact
with each other and what they do on a normal basis. For example,
someone may observe a classroom, an encounter between doctor and
patient, or the way people use public parks. Some observers actually
participate in the group which they are observing, which depending on
the situation, can either enhance or hinder the study.
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BTEC National Care – Heinemann (M.Walsh, B.Stretch, N.Moonie,
D.Hearne, E.Miller and D.Webb)
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