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

social action v social structure

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Social Action The Social Action theorist's view point is that the individual is able to control his or her own actions, make choices and behave in a way they choose to rather then being controlled by society. This does not mean the individual will ignore the social norms and values it means they will interpret them in there own way. Social action theorists believe that individuals judge and interprets the situation and then acts on these things. Evaluation Social action theory's look at small scale situations but it could be argued that as we have meetings and exchanges in small scale situations with various people over the day it is important to helping us from our character and social identity. Symbolic interactionism is also something which we do in everyday life; we are always trying to interpret what is going on around us and how we fit into it. We act on our view and interpretation of the situation and sometimes it's wrong. It could be argued all people have free will to make decisions in life but to the extent they practice it is dependent on how happy they are with the situation they are in. Social Systems From the social Structure theorists' view point is that the individual is controlled by society, Society is moulding us to conform to different groups and once we have we take on there norms, values and behaviour to fit in. ...read more.

Middle

Again some may argue that this is also ignoring individualism and free will, a person will make there own choices. It could be argued that now more than ever before the youth culture is demonstrating free will, becoming more individual and stretching the limits societies norms and values. This could be seen as conflict. In this essay I will be discussing how influential the post-modernists' view on class and gender are with shaping our identity. It is obvious that there is still a class structure in Britain today although it seems that there is less extremes of class; very rich & very poor. The working class has changed over the years with Britain becoming less industrialised and trade orientated. The working class would have been manual workers such as ship builders, miners or factory workers. These workers would have lived near their place of work along with their colleagues, they would socialise together and had probably formed a very close community. These things would have helped them form their identity and relate to those around them through their class but, in recent years with Britain's decline in exporting goods many of the manual jobs have disappeared. This means those communities will have broken down and people will have moved away to find new work. ...read more.

Conclusion

As the world is becoming more materialistic possessions and lifestyle determine your class not occupation. Gender is a very big part of our identity, from a very young age we are reinforced with gender appropriate toys, games, stories and views. Children learn from watching those around them, little girls want to be like mummy so they will have dolls and Hoovers to copy mummy. But postmodernists are arguing that gender characteristics are being transferred between the sexes. More and more woman are becoming assertive and concentrating on their careers before having a family this means woman are becoming more powerful, no longer the weaker sex this, could be threatening male identity of being the bread winner. This could be the reason the 'new man' is appearing. Males are taking on feminine characteristics, they pay more attention to their appearance, use more beauty and styling products and there are more men's' lifestyle magazines than ever before. As woman are getting better jobs/ careers they will be earning more money giving them economic independence. The mass media now target woman more in their advertising as they know more and more young single women have the means to live a better lifestyle, buy more goods and pursue different leisure activities. It is becoming more apparent that typical gender characteristics are becoming interchangeable with actual gender. The postmodernists see that your social identity is now being based on consumption of goods and lifestyle rather that class or gender. ?? ?? ?? ?? Jill Hehir SOCIOLOGY ...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. Structural and Action theories

    Functionalism is a form of Structural-Consensus Theory. It adopts the same beliefs as consensus theory. Emile Durkheim, thought of as the originator of functional thoughts, believed strongly in society having order to it. He like all believers of Structural theories, believed that society can be studied using science as a reliable source of research.

  2. Philosophies of Social Science.

    Smith himself, and other classical economists did recognise that this individual economic exchange must take place within a legal and moral framework. So there is a role for the state in setting down the rules and also in ensuring that issues such as sanitation, health and factory conditions are addressed

  1. Social and action theories

    In society every individual performs a wide variety of roles such as employee, parent, and citizen. Functionalists believe that we all know how to play these roles through our effective socialisation, from parents bringing up their children properly and teaching them the norms and moral values of society to the point where they become part of the child's own consciousness.

  2. Shifting Gender Norms: The Ideal Woman in Story of an African Farm.

    still far more modern than Sannie, who does not allow any notion of love enter into a marriage relationship. Em is a woman, then, who believes in her self and in love, and she is unwilling to settle for anything less that she deserves.

  1. Is class a useful concept in explaining social action? It has been argued that ...

    His Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy (1962) presents the theory that the structure of a human society (politically and ideologically) is determined by its economic power, and that human consciousness is driven by material possessions. This can be demonstrated by looking at feudal society, as presented in Marx & Engels' Communist Manifesto (1962).

  2. Is Madness An Individual Attribute Or A Process Of Social Construction?

    Both Goffman and Foucault demonstrate the rake of society as an integral part in the creation of mental illness as it is understood today in wider society, and emphasise in particular the manner in which such asylums contribute to the 'mortification of self'- in which the outside self is stripped

  1. Eugenics - good breeding.

    The concepts behind eugenics are based on the principal that all men are created unequal, while the Catholic Church and democracy alike both agree that men are created equal: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal" (Declaration of Independence).

  2. Discuss the extent to which public and social policies have impacted upon the theory ...

    Through his terms gemeinschaft and gesellschaft (which translated means community and association). Tonnies attempted to explain the differences between traditional societies and new urban societies. Tonnies used the term gemeinschaft to refer to human relationships that were intimate and lasting such as with the family or a close knit group, a group where a person's involvement is total.

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