Page
  1. 1
    1
  2. 2
    2
  3. 3
    3
  4. 4
    4
  5. 5
    5
  6. 6
    6
  7. 7
    7
  8. 8
    8
  9. 9
    9

Discuss the similarities and differences between conflict of Marxist theories and functionalist theories in sociology.

Do not show me this again

Are you in the right place?

Jump to Sociology and see how teachers think you should prepare in:

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

´╗┐Dee-Anne Dottin Sociology Ms. Gibbs Question: Discuss the similarities and differences between conflict of Marxist theories and functionalist theories in sociology. 25 marks Although sociology is a recently developed field of study, the advancement of the study is progressing rapidly. Sociological theories are ways sociologists explain society and its mega structure. The structural conflict and structural consensus theories are inevitable chapters of sociology. With some similarities, these two theories have different ideologies and ways of explaining the society. Both theories view society as a system of social structures and both agree that these social structures exist within a society. However, the two theories differ greatly in their opinion on the purpose of these structures. Functionalism views the system of social structures as entities that work together for the benefit of all, but Marxism believes the system of social structures are in place but vary in their benefits depending on the wealth and power of the people involved. involved. Functionalism, the structural consensus sociological theory is a key theory that was developed by Emile Durkheim, one of the founding fathers of sociology. This theory sees society as a mega structure of inter-related social institutions such as schools and the legal system that is in constant consensus.

Middle

The main ideologies of the structural consensus and structural conflict theory stand parallel to each other and can never come to an agreeing point. One of Functionalismâs key concepts is the collective conscience brought up by Emile Durkheim, which is defined as shared norms and valued in a society. Functionalists believe that collective conscious comes from socialization. Individuals learn what are the societyâs expectations, values and norms from interacting with others. In contrast, Marxism spoke on the conflict of interest within the society itself. The bourgeoisie wants monopolization and more riches to themselves which will result in the tyrant exploitation of proletariats while the proletariats want more wages and fair working hours. To sum up, Functionalism spoke on how all individuals in society is in consensus with the social order and social rules whereas Marxism touches on the subject of how conflict is within the society. Another key concept in Functionalism and Marxism can be compared which is the theory of social equilibrium by Talcott Parsons and the theory of dialectical materialism by Joseph Dietzgen. In sociology, a system is said to be social equilibrium when there is a dynamic working balance among its interdependent parts.

Conclusion

Both Marxism and Functionalism theories are macrospective. This means that the two theories look at society as a whole rather than looking at it from the individual point of view. Both Marxism and Functionalism look at the structures within a society such as family and education, and debate how these affect the individual instead of how the individual affects the structures. Similarly, both theories look at the overall structure of society and argue that education prepares pupils for their position in society whether it is an equal or unequal position. Seeing that these two theories are macro theories but the ideologies are a big contrast. Functionalism helps us understand how society is integrated to function as a whole. Marxism wakes us and gets us to understand more on the exploitations we are exposed to. Functionalism and Marxism are sociological perspectives that ask, and state, certain theories about society and the people that live within it. The two theories attempt to explain how society influences people, and similarly how people influence society. However, the two ideologies are distinctly different. They're so different in fact that only two similarities exist between the two theories.Without functionalism and Marxism, sociology would be very inadequate.

The above preview is unformatted text

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • Over 150,000 essays available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Over 180,000 student essays
  • Every subject and level covered
  • Thousands of essays marked by teachers

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification essays

  1. Sociological Theories

    However Marx believes crime is rational and it does make sense in a 'dog eat dog' society (Horalambus and Holborn, 1990. P629), where competition is the order of the day and individuals must fend for themselves in order to survive.

  2. Compare and contrast two sociological theories

    Marx developed this idea out of his study of Hegel. Change occurs in functionalism through the entire system understanding the need for the change, feeling it internally and seeing it happen in other people (Giddens, A.2001, Sociology 4th edition).

  1. Peer reviewed

    Produce an essay identifying the different sociological approaches to secularisation with reference to Marxism, ...

    4 star(s)

    Karl Marx looked at religion as coming to an end. He saw religion as a reflection of class society; it would justify the position of the ruling class. Additionally it would serve the lower class with faith of hope in life after-death and give the hope of a happier life for their suffering on earth.

  2. Can and should sociology be a science?

    Also, sociology should not be a science because a non scientific approach generates data that is highly valid, insightful and achieves verstehen. For example interpretivist feminists, Dobash gained a true and detailed understanding of women's experience of domestic violence by carrying out informal interviews which lasted for up to twelve hours.

  1. Two concepts of society are functionalism and Marxism.

    This provides us with our values which support the society. A Marxist would disagree with this view, they see social control agencies being used by the bourgeoisie to control the working class and that education gives people their values which support the bourgeoisie exploitation.

  2. Evaluation of Functionalism and Marxism

    who own and control the means of production, and on the other side you have the subject class (or the proletariat)

  1. Key Perspectives in Sociology

    on domestic assaults reported to the police in all of Edinburgh and one district of Glasgow (cited Taylor et al 2005). The figures were a secondary source of data and we can see from the above table that the information it contained was qualitative as it was concerned with numbers and statistics.

  2. Major Theories in Sociology

    Quantitative research uses many methods like data collection, survey , interview etc. Positivism studies different institutions of a society where as interpretivism analysis the role of individual in society. Positivism is macro and inter positivism is micro sociology. Positivism defines sociology as science which is based on data and experiments,

  • Over 180,000 essays
    written by students
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to write
    your own great essays

Marked by a teacher

This essay has been marked by one of our great teachers. You can read the full teachers notes when you download the essay.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review on the essay page.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review under the essay preview on this page.

Do not show me this again

Are you in the right place?

Jump to Sociology and see how teachers think you should prepare in: