Functionalist Perspective On Society As A Macro Institution

1056 Words Sep 23rd, 2015 5 Pages
The functionalist perspective
In this essay I will outline and evaluate the functionalist perspective. This will include exploring the origins of the perspective, while explaining and evaluating how functionalists see society as a macro institution, rather than its many constituent parts. Further to this I will explore how functionalists deem the way society should be maintained and organised to maintain a functionalist’s ideal society.
The consensus perspective is predominantly concerned with the continued stability of society and that society is grounded around co-operation and mutual agreement, rather than conflict. Meaning that a consensus perspective on society assumes we all share the same values, norms, attitudes and beliefs, rather than individual ones. In addition to this, by maintaining these beliefs, it is in the best interest of all members of society. Although the consensus perspective is also known as functionalism, and shares some of the same assumptions such as social consensus (History Learning Site, 2015), there are differences. For instance, functionalists see society as a functional unit that does not need to be altered from its current functional form. Functionalists, also see society as a collection of cogs in an ever turning coherent machine, where individual parts have a function to play in the overall success of the final product (society). Using this analogy we can see that functionalists believe that individuals form parts of a larger system, and…
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