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Assess The Functionalist Explanation Of Social Order

There are a number of functionalist explanations for social inequality. One is that unequal societies are more stable and cohesive than those with less inequality. This is because people in unequal societies have something to strive for and something to lose, which motivates them to work hard and stay focused. Additionally, unequal societies tend to have lower rates of crime and violence, as people have more to lose if they break the law.

Another functionalist explanation for social inequality is that it provides a way for society to allocate resources efficiently. This is because people who are born into wealthy families or who have high-paying jobs are likely to be the most productive members of society. As such, they should receive a greater share of society’s resources. This explanation is known as the meritocracy.

Finally, functionalists argue that social inequality is necessary in order to motivate people to achieve their full potential. This is because people who are born into wealthy families or who have high-paying jobs tend to have more motivation and opportunity to succeed. Additionally, social inequality provides a way for society to identify and reward individuals who make significant contributions.

These are just a few of the functionalist explanations for social inequality. While there are some merits to these explanations, they do not paint a complete picture of how and why inequality exists in society. Additionally, they do not take into account the negative consequences of social inequality, such as discrimination, conflict, and. As such, it is important to consider all of the possible explanations for social inequality before making any conclusions.

Social Inequality means any disparities between varying groups or people within a community that result in someone having less favorable life circumstances than the other. Functionalists think these inequalities come from the meritocracy we live under. A Meritocracy is defined as a system where social stratification is not only necessary, but encouraged for the betterment of society as a whole. Functionalities argue that inequality SERVES a purpose; they are functional for the upkeep of said society.

They see society as a system, where each part has a role to play. The different parts work together to keep the system running smoothly. Inequalities exist because they provide motivation for people to work hard and succeed. They also argue that inequalities benefit society by providing a clear hierarchy and a way of distinguishing between people.

There are three main explanations for social inequality according to functionalists:

-The division of labour: This is the idea that society is divided into different groups, each with its own specific roles and responsibilities. People are sorted into these groups based on their ability and skills. This results in some people having more power and authority than others.

-Meritocracy: This is the belief that people should be rewarded based on their merit, or their ability and skills. This means that people who are more talented and skilled will be rewarded with higher incomes and better jobs.

-Functional fit: This is the idea that people are sorted into different roles in society based on their ability to do them. This means that people who are best suited to a particular job will be more likely to get it.

These explanations have been criticised for being too simplistic and for not taking into account the role of discrimination in social inequality. However, they do provide a useful starting point for understanding how and why social inequalities exist.

The functionalist theory states that society is based on shared values, meaning that there is harmony and equilibrium between different social groups. This theory also argues that inequalities are inevitable and necessary in all societies.

They are functional for society as they motivate people to work hard and meet the needs of others.

We can assess the functionalist explanations of social inequality by looking at three key ideas: meritocracy, social mobility and the division of labour.

Meritocracy is the idea that people are rewarded according to their ability and effort. Social mobility is the idea that people can move up or down the social ladder depending on their ability and effort. The division of labour is the idea that different people have different roles to play in society, with some being more important than others.

All of these ideas suggest that social inequality is necessary and inevitable. However, there are a number of criticisms that can be made of these ideas.

Firstly, functionalists assume that everyone has the same opportunity to succeed. However, this is not always the case. For example, people from lower-class backgrounds may not have the same access to education and resources as those from higher-class backgrounds. This means that they are at a disadvantage from the start.

Secondly, functionalists assume that people are rewarded according to their ability and effort. However, this is not always the case. For example, women have often been paid less than men for doing the same job, regardless of their ability or effort.

Durkheim stated that social inequality and distinction were essential for sustaining social order and avoiding complete chaos in more advanced civilizations. He believed that a variety of specialists are necessary to keep society functioning properly.

The unequal distribution of rewards provides incentive for people to fill these specialist roles. Merton’s functional theory also sees social inequality as beneficial, but not essential, for the stability of society. He argued that people in different social positions perform different functions within society. For example, those in high status jobs provide leadership, while those in low status jobs provide support. While social inequality may be functional, Merton believed that it can also lead to dysfunction when people are unable to achieve their goals due to limited resources or opportunities.

Both of these functionalist theories see social inequality as necessary for the stability and functioning of society. However, they differ in their views on whether social inequality is essential or merely beneficial. Additionally, while Durkheim sees social inequality as inevitable, Merton believes that it can lead to social problems.

This equality can be accomplished by a division of labor in which people have various jobs according to their natural gifts. Some occupations would naturally have more prestige than others, and also greater benefits or control–such as lawyers, doctors, or barristers. People would go along with this arrangement so long as they felt the system was just. Of course, conflict might break out on occasion but social pressure could mediate those situations.

Children would learn from their parents and teachers to accept that everyone has a different role and status in society.

The family is seen as a microcosm of society, teaching children the same lessons about inequality that they will encounter in the wider world. The education system would also reinforce these ideas. Functionalists see social inequality as necessary because it motivates people to work hard and achieve their goals. They argue that if everyone had the same income, no-one would have any incentive to work hard or develop their talents.

However, critics argue that functionalists ignore the negativity of inequality and its harmful effects on society. They claim that social inequality creates conflict and division rather than harmony and co-operation. Marxists, in particular, argue that social inequality is harmful because it leads to class conflict. The rich get richer and the poor get poorer, leading to tension and conflict between the classes.

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