Conflict in Social Theory Essay by Research Group

Conflict in Social Theory
Examines the views of social theorists on issues of conflict, alienation and paradox in social structures.
# 27539 | 1,204 words | 7 sources | MLA | 2002 | US
Published on Jun 10, 2003 in Sociology (Theory) , Sociology (General) , Political Science (Marx / Engels)

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This research examines the sociological work of Emile Durkheim, Karl Marx and Roland Barthes, with reference to their treatment of theoretical antinomies, or unresolvable contradictions embedded into accounts of social structure, form, and change and their impact on American interactionist and French structuralist social theory. The research sets forth the context of the emergence of modern social theory and then discusses how the works of Marx, Durkheim, and Barthes offer a way of analyzing the relative situations of individuals, groups and societies as a whole.

From the Paper:

"This view of division of labor is that the more specialized and personal an individual activity is, the more vital the social experience (328). But diversity also implies social conflict, since too much specialization may infringe on mechanical solidarity, or collective sentiment (Durkheim 298). Inhibiting creativity implicit in organic solidarity may create an artificial, mechanical stability. The implication for individuals overwhelmed by that social context is what Durkheim terms anomie, expressed by reference to dysfunctional elements "which tend to become institutionalized or resolved" (233)."

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