Social Inequality Theories and Hurricane Katrina Analytical Essay by scribbler

Social Inequality Theories and Hurricane Katrina
Analyzes the reasons for the failure of the relief efforts for those people left behind during Hurricane Katrina from the perspective of Marxian and functional theories of inequality.
# 152766 | 1,580 words | 12 sources | APA | 2013 | US
Published on Apr 28, 2013 in Sociology (Theory) , Political Science (Marx / Engels)

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This paper explains that many sociologists have debated endlessly the attempt to combine the theories of functional imperatives of a society and consequent inequalities between human beings and the confrontationist theory of Marxian doctrine of inequality. During Hurricane Katrina, those persons who remained stranded even days after the hurricane were mainly poor and black; thereby, the author inquires if they were left behind to fend for themselves because they were of the class of people who are poor or black or because the aftermath was just too overwhelming. After reviewing this situation from the perspective of both theories, the paper concludes that, without a doubt, this failure of the relief efforts can best be explained by the functional theories of sociology rather than pure Marxian concepts of class confrontation and class struggle.

Table of Contents:
Social Inequality - A Theoretical Perspective
Relief Efforts in the Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina

From the Paper:

"The entire nation was plunged into a controversy when several national media portrayed black people as looters and killers while white people as helpless persons scourging for food. Associated Press photographer Dave Martin had witnessed a black man braving knee deep water as he waded into a store and emerged with a bag and a case of sodas and did not think twice to depict this colored person as a looter. However in another photograph a white couple also wading through knee deep water and ironically enough also holding bags of grocery were depicted as finding food. Chris Graythen, a photographer with Agence France-Presse had photographed a white couple standing beside provisions that had "floated" out of a grocery store and without even verifying whether it was an act of arson or not, captioned the photograph: "After finding food". Once these photos were published side by side in Flickr a wave of indignation swept the nation and Rapper Kanye West in "A Concert for Hurricane Relief" belted out "You see a black family, it says they're looting. You see a white family; it says they're looking for food."
"This racist bias and undercurrent of white supremacy was evident in the flurry of reports about looting and violence at the Civic Center and the Superdome."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Collins, R. (1975). Conflict Sociology . Academic Press.
  • Dahrendorf, R. (1966). Review of Gerhard Lenski's Power and Privilege. American Sociological Review 31 , 14-18.
  • Frankel, B. (1979). On the State of the State: Marxist Theories of the State after Leninism. Theory and Society 7 , 205-27.
  • Habermass, J. (1975). Legitimation Crisis. Beacon.
  • Lenski, G. (1966). Power and Prestige. McGraw-Hill.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Social Inequality Theories and Hurricane Katrina (2013, April 28) Retrieved October 25, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Social Inequality Theories and Hurricane Katrina" 28 April 2013. Web. 25 October. 2020. <>