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

Marxist and feminist theories help our understanding of religion in society differently

Extracts from this document...


Religion Religion is defined in two ways functional as in the function it perform for society and individuals as was said by Yinger "a system of beliefs and practises by a means of which a group of people struggles with the ultimate problems of human life". The second definition is substantive which the content of religion i.e. Dirkhyme's distinction between the sacred and profane. Marxists (Marx) believe that religion is an illusion which eases the pain produced by exploitation and oppression. It is a series of myths that justifies and legitimate the domination of the ruling class. Marx see it as the "sigh of the oppressed creature...it is the opium of the people. Marxists believe that religion comforts and makes life more bearable for working class people as there is a future in heaven which may explain the high number of religious people in third world countries. ...read more.


Lastly Marxists believe that religion is the opium of the people as mentioned above. Religion is like a drug that dulls pain and creates a dream world rather than bringing true happiness. Religion promises a paradise of eternal bliss in life after death. Religion can offer the hope of supernatural solutions the problems on earth and when people look forward t an event it makes the time passing more bearable. Feminists follow similar views as Marxist, by arguing that religion is an instrument of domination and oppression. They see religion as a product of patriarchy and they see it as serving the interests of men rather than those of a capitalist class i.e. Giddens who is not a feminist sociologist says "Christian religion is a resolutely male affair in its symbolism and its hierarchy. ...read more.


to control the oppressed group (women) and serves as a way for compensation women for their second class status... man enjoys the great advantage of having a God endorse the code he writes: Thus code uses divine authority to support made dominance. Armstrong (1993) pointed out that women occupy a marginal position in most major religions and although they have made gains in many areas of life but gains in religion are very limited. Marxist and feminist theories help our understanding of religion in society differently. Both theories explain different parts of religion and how it affects our lives. They both show that religion is used as an instrument of oppression and domination and a product of patriarchy. It explains why more working class people go to church. Working class people use religion as opium as it dulls the pain and create a dream world rather bring true happiness. ?? ?? ?? ?? Shingai Kamere ...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. Assess The Feminist View That Conventional Malestream Theories Are Inadequate For An Understanding Of ...

    Her reason for this disregard is that women were less likely to commit crime so they were viewed as a less problem for society. Heidensohn (1996) has also offered reasons why women are invisible in crime. Male crime is often more violent.

  2. Functionalist views on Religion.

    druggies'. Relative deprivation refers to a subjective feeling of deprivation. This says that while middle class people may not be objectively deprived, they may feel it. It does not just refer to economic factors-the middle class can feel spiritually deprived-they see the world as materialistic and seek refuge ion a sense of community offered by some religious movements.

  1. Pakistani Women In a Changing Society.

    Lower middle class families would find it degrading to let their women take up jobs as domestic servants or to work on the factory floor (though some are driven to this out of desperation) i.e. jobs for which education is not a pre-requisite.

  2. The purpose of this essay is to describe four studies relating to gender each ...

    significant role in industry - which maintains society - his employment responsibilities should therefore not be interfered with. This also refers to the extended family for which the male is not responsible. Parsons indicates that obligations to extended family, out with the nuclear family, disrupts the freedom of career mobility and reliability - which in turn affects society.

  1. Pitted against Patriarchy

    And terrible judge."15 Despite this realization, however, Judith Hearne clings to them like anchors in a world of chaos. Her identity is so inextricably entwined with these structures that independence from them is not an option. Moreover, she is only too aware that a renunciation of faith effectively silences and excludes her from a community which has already marginalized her.

  2. Compare and Contrast Functionalism and Marxist Theories of the Role of Religion These Two ...

    how to help the sick and elderly. This promotes value consensus needed to create social order and stability. Religion also gives us answers to evil acts on earth and the answer is god is believed to be giving us a test this helps people adjust to difficult situations which creates social bonding.

  1. Discuss how feminist theory can help explain women's experiences of health and or sport.

    Black feminism, although concerned with the oppression of women in general, is more concerned with the fact that black women and women of colour do not hold views identical to those of 'white feminists', that 'white feminists' need to "understand more fully the intersection of racism, sexism and classism in the lives of black women" (Feminist Thought, Rosemarie Tong p217)

  2. The Influence and Role of Religion In Hopi Society.

    and her secretions becoming the salt, according to Egan's account (Egan, 1994. p.8). Egan's version of the story continues, to state that the sky god then assigned different areas of the earth to be ruled by different gods. Masau is the god of the surface of the earth and the

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