Conflict: Sociology and Ever-changing Nature

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Strucutral functionalism is a form of functional analysis. Functional analysis (or functionalism) is one of the major theoretical perspectives in sociology. In fact, many of the early giants of sociology, such as Spencer, Comte, and Durkheim were functionalists. Essentially, this perspective sees society as comprised of many parts that contribute in unique ways to the operation of the whole society. The way I explain this to my class is to think of a clock. What makes a clock a clock? First, you have to have certain parts, such as hands, gears, springs, and a power source. But this is not enough. You have to put the parts together, of course. Still, however, you may not have a clock because you cannot put the parts together in any way…show more content…
Subsequent thinkers have described different versions of conflict theory; a common theme is that different social groups have unequal power, though all groups struggle for the same limited resources. Conflict theory has been used to explain diverse human behavior, such as educational practices that either sustain or challenge the status quo, cultural customs regarding the elderly, and criminal behavior. Social conflict theory is a Marxist-based social theory which argues that individuals and groups (social classes) within society have differing amounts of material and non-material resources (the wealthy vs. the poor) and that the more powerful groups use their power in order to exploit groups with less power.[citation needed] The two methods by which this exploitation is done are through brute force usually done by police and the army and economics. Earlier social conflict theorists argue that money is the mechanism which creates social disorder. The theory further states that society is created from ongoing social conflict between various groups. There are other theories of deviance, the functionalist theory, the control theory and the strain theory. It also refers to various types of positive social interaction that may occur within social relationships. A homeless American.
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