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Religion in Society

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Religion. 1) Ways in which religion can influence social change? Many sociologists have different interpretations on how religion influences social change. Functionalists see religion to be a positive thing as it reinforces norms and values. Functionalists would state that religion 'reinforces collective conscience'. They see religion to provide consensus and is necessary for stability in society. Where as Marxists see religion to be something, which just makes oppression more bearable. Marxists state that religion acts as a tool of social control, maintaining the existing system of exploitation and reinforcing the existing stratification order. 2) Problems with defining religion in modern society? ...read more.


3) Critically examine sociological contributions to an understanding of the relationship between religion and social change in society. Sociologists have different perspectives on the relationship between religion and social change in society. Functionalists believe religion is a conservative force because they believe religion promotes a stable society, with no disruptions. Functionalists such as Durkheim would argue that religion promotes social solidarity and is a positive thing to keeping society stable. They see religion to encourage social integration. The Marxist perspective on religion is that religion represents a means of ideologically justifying the social world. From this perspective, religion is a means of social control and, therefore, a conservative force, which only benefits the ruling class. ...read more.


It is the opium of the people". Marxists see that religion gives the working class a feeling of relief from the oppression in society where as the ruling class have the unequal distribution of wealth and income in society but religion would describe that everyone has their place in society has 'God' would want them to. Marx describes how the Catholic Church is extremely powerful in society and states that in society the Catholic Church have most power over the economic and political well bring of society. Marx describes the Protestant religion to see that very person in society has their place due to what god put them on the earth from and do not drive for wealth etc. Michelle Connor ...read more.

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