• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"Marxism and other theories of social conflict are irrelevant to an understanding of modern society". Assess the extent to which sociological arguments and evidence support these views

Extracts from this document...


"Marxism and other theories of social conflict are irrelevant to an understanding of modern society". Assess the extent to which sociological arguments and evidence support these views Modern society can be defined as the time where as I time where industry, bureaucracy, science, the division of labour and technology. It also includes the decline of community and religion. Many sociologists such as Durkheim, Weber and Marx have theories which predict/explain/argue with the features of modern society enabling a wider understanding. Conflict theories, such as Marxism and Feminism can be described as irrelevant in today's society as their ideas may no longer explain society in the modern world. The enlightenment is an aspect of modern society which grants confidence in the ability of human reason to provide an understanding of the world, a way too validate this is to say that society now is not based on conflict, but a foundation of knowledge. Smart (1992) would argue that "An understanding or knowledge of natural and social reality was deemed to depend on a unity of reason and observation, made possible by the practice of scientific methods or enquiry". ...read more.


As in modernity the universe centers on the individual, it must so equally for everyone. This makes class and gender conflicts irrelevant as the 'sovereign individual' reinforces the concept of equality. The functionalist Durkheim introduced the idea of social facts; these are external to individuals but act on them in a constraining way. These can be like laws that don't affect the person in society apart from stopping a certain aspect of their behavior from occurring. Dusrkheim suggests two ways in which these can occur firstly by determining the cause of it from previous facts, the other that it is needed to help one of the functions of society. Both are present in society as a whole, these according to functionalists control and maintain the functions of society that is mainly true in today's society with law and order as a form of social control Marxist's general belief is one concerning class based inequalities across the generations. This means that throughout modernization, traditional Marxists will still believe that the inequalities remain and the changes in the economy only justify them. ...read more.


Weber would also accentuate disenchantment in today's society. There is less religion and people do generally not believe in "the magic" of life as much as they used to. This is due to 'rationalisation the process by which modes of precise calculation based on observation and reason increasingly dominates the social world. Rationalization is a habit of thought that replaces tradition, emotion, and values as motivators of human conduct. Bureaucracy is a particular case of rationalization applied to human social organization'... In conclusion it seems that Marxism and other theories of conflict are, to a degree, irrelevant to an understanding of modern society as with the rise of science and decline of religion more and more theories of consensus and unity help describe today's culture. However, without the conflicts of class and gender society would have never evolved into what it is now, because of this it plays a big part in the social structure. We can plainly see that conflict did help in the design of modern society but no longer has a place. ?? ?? ?? ?? Matthew Proctor ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Sociology section.

Found what you're looking for?

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

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Sociology essays

  1. Discuss the key concepts within, and state the similarities and differences between, the following ...

    He also believed, like functionalists that human societies can and will improve through rational and scientific thinking. [Haralambos & Holborn 6th ed.] Marxism and functionalism share a number of broad ideas, for example they are both interested in explaining and interpreting social life.

  2. "As researchers are also members of society it is impossible for them to be ...

    They have interpreted the data in different ways. Interpretivist sociologists also agree with anti-positivists such as contemporary sociologists, in that many say that sociologists simply impose their own views of reality on the social world. However, Positivists disagree with the views of anti-positivists. Positivists advocate the use of scientific methods.

  1. The position of widows in Nepalese society - sociological study.

    It is vital that this subject is introduced on to the agenda of three great world conferences on Population and Development, on Social Development and on Women, which will take place over the next 18 months - and that this forms part of the real-life agenda for change as the millennium is approached.

  2. Are issues of Social Class still relevant in modern society?

    in, what he considered, a 'class' convergence and thus a growth in middle 'class' membership. Halsey (86) observed that status distinction between the middle and working classes' has become 'less obvious' during this century and attributes these findings primarily to increased social mobility.

  1. Compare and contrast the six main sociological theories of religion as well as examining ...

    The result of hard work and no pleasure was that Calvinists became very well off and amassed considerable amounts of wealth. Yet they had nothing to do with this money. They tended to be merchants and so were not interested in land, and they certainly did not want grandiose houses, jewels or clothes, so their wealth lay idle.

  2. Functionalist views on Religion.

    Secondly most religion seems to originate amongst the oppressed classes. It helps the working class come to terms with their position and offers future hope. Religion is an instrument of oppression Since it acts as a mechanism of social control and promises the belief that the existing social order is 'God Given'.

  1. Max Weber: Basic Terms (The Fundamental Concepts of Sociology)

    All this followed the principle of ''your want of today, may be my want of tomorrow'' (this principle was not rationally weighed, but it played its part in sentiment). Accordingly, haggling in exchange and loan situations, as well as permanent debt-enslavement and similar kinds of enslavement, were confined to outgroup morality and applied only to outsiders.

  2. Assess the view that sociological arguments and evidence support functionalist views of the role ...

    Their faith in America is practically a religion in itself and the symbol that they worship is the flag. There are however many arguments against Durkheim's theory of civil religion, firstly Durkheim only studied a small amount of aboriginal groups which some claim were 'untypical of other tribes' therefore it

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work