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Examine the Marxist view that the function of the education system is to pass on ideology and reproduce existing class structure

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Introduction

´╗┐Examine the Marxist view that the function of the education system is to pass on ideology and reproduce existing class structure (20 marks) Intro: Marxists theorists take a macro approach on society; they look into the bigger picture and in broad terms the affects of the education system on society. They are also a conflict theory based on social class, they believe that society is capitalist and in favor of and benefit the bourgeoisie and the working class are exploited and disadvantaged. Para1: Marxists believe that education serves the needs of capitalism and the ruling class. This is because education functions to transmit norms and values that create social stability in society. They believe these norms and values reflect the dominant ideologies that benefit the ruling elite and so success in education is based on class not intelligence. ...read more.

Middle

restricted code where they would speak in more detail and use complex sentence structures whereas working class children have only restricted speech codes and their speech is disjointed and unpunctuated and not elaborated. Since most text books and exam papers use elaborated codes the working class would have difficulty understanding them thus resulting in failure and the middle class having an advantage in education. Due to the disadvantage the working classes have this explains the reproduction of the class system, supporting the Marxist view. Para3: Although Bernstein?s theory gives support to the Marxist view it can be criticized since it is stereotypical of the working class children. Not all working class children may have restricted code, they may have elaborated speech codes and not all middle class children may have the ability to switch to elaborated code, thus contradicting the support. ...read more.

Conclusion

These are skills provision: teaching the skills required by a modern industrial society, either general or specific, socialization: transmitting key beliefs, norms and values and role allocation: where education sifts and sort people into the appropriate jobs for their talents through exams and qualifications. Functionalists believe that there?s an equality of opportunity where education is meritocratic, so that every one of any class has the chance to achieve success in society based on their ability. Therefore showing that children don?t have to accept inequality and education allows social mobility so it doesn?t reproduce class structure. Concl: In conclusion both functionalism and Marxism both look at the big picture, tending to ignore social interaction- with the exception of Willis. Both say that education has a huge impact on the individual and that there?s a close link with the economy and work. The biggest difference is how they see inequality. Marxists say that education helps to maintain inequality and make people accept inequality. Functionalists, however, say education passes on the value of meritocracy and lets people better themselves. ...read more.

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