How do the Functionalist and Conflict Theories Explain Trends and Change in Our Australian Society?
Sociology is the study of society and the behaviour patterns of a particular group or culture. In contemporary Australian society, a good understanding of this is needed in order to make better social changes to meet social needs. When it comes to trying to explain and understand society, there are two main points of view that a person can take. These are the functionalist view, which is largely based on works by Talcott Parsons, and the conflict view, sometimes referred to as Marxism, as Karl Marx made a significant contribution towards this theory. Although in most ways these views directly oppose each other, ultimately, they are both trying to do the same thing, that is, explain why society is like it is today.
Functionalists see society in a relatively optimistic way. …
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