Microsociology, Macrosociology, Functionalism and Conflict Theory – Theoretical Approaches of Social Structure (SOC)

by Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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    00:00 Okay, so why don’t we take a look at some of the theoretical approaches to understanding in studying Sociology.

    00:06 So, one clear way is to distinguish between Macrosociology and Microsociology.

    00:12 Macrosociology emphasizes the analysis of social systems and population on a large scale.

    00:18 So we’re looking at, we can focus on small groups but then we’re looking at how that applies to that broader larger social structure Somethings big picture.

    00:26 And we have Microsociology which concerns… concerning the nature of everyday human social interaction and the agency on a small scale.

    00:34 And we’re looking about face to face interactions.

    00:37 So focus more on individual interaction and thinking within groups as oppose to applying group thinking into a larger broader bigger group.

    00:47 So they’re couple other theories and models that we’re going to walk through.

    00:51 And we’re going to look at how they differentiate and what it is that they’re actually focusing on in terms of Sociology.

    00:56 So first is Functionalism.

    00:58 And this falls as a type of macrosocial theory.

    01:01 So core of the Functionalism Model, we’re saying that states that societies are complex systems of interrelated and interdependent parts.

    01:11 And that each part of society is significantly influences the others.

    01:15 So it’s interconnected.

    01:17 Each part of society exists because it has a specific function that perform for society as a whole.

    01:24 And there that societies follow a state of equilibrium and shifts are adjusted through adjustments.

    01:30 So, we know that study in our society is we have a different bodies or we have this educational system, we have the religious sector, we have the commercial sector.

    01:38 And so all of this play a specific role yet they’re all related, right? So businesses can impact religion and religion can impact vice versa can impact business, and education can impact businesses and so on.

    01:55 So they’re all interconnected. And what it does is that it establishes a certain equilibrium that that’s a specific society has in that moment.

    02:02 and if there's ever a change like there's turmoil in the church or there's economic instability that’s going to over time adjust itself and go back to either a new state, a new state of equilibrium or return back to the previous level of equilibrium.

    02:20 Conflict theory is a little bit different.

    02:21 Conflict Theory states that society is a competition for and they’re competing for a limited pool of resources.

    02:28 And they do not lean on some form of equilibriums.

    02:32 So it’s not that they’re trying to get to a certain state.

    02:35 it’s that there's this constant struggle.

    02:38 As a limited matter of resources end this constant competition.

    02:41 Individuals and groups requires scarce resources to satisfy their own needs and wants that’s creating endless conflicts.

    02:49 Those with power have the ability to control more of those resources for examples, political, economic and social resources.

    02:57 So, that can make a lot of sense and always to.

    03:00 And that they’re looking for a whether it’s economic wealth.

    03:04 if you’re looking for political power, if you’re looking so access to social resources.

    03:10 The individuals are a little bit more affluent who have that in terms of society on a ladder or a little bit higher up.

    03:15 They would have more of that.

    03:16 And so there's a constant struggle and conflict to trying get more of those resources.

    03:21 Now, the major criticism with the Conflict Theory includes the following three points.

    03:25 First, focuses on conflict and not really the stability that expresses the society.

    03:29 So it’s not that things are perfect but it’s not also a daily conflict.

    03:35 In a lot of ways, we’ve embrace and we live within the social constructs that are around us, right? So we sort of understand and we live in.

    03:41 And now we’re miserable in fighting every day.

    03:43 It also ignores the non-forceful ways agreements can be reach.

    03:47 So there's other peaceful and sort of academic ways to discuss and negotiating and create ways to work within that society.

    03:55 And it focuses on economic driver as a main conflict within society.

    03:58 So it’s not always about money.

    04:01 There could be other things that people within society are debating about and trying to as understand a little bit better.

    04:07 And so this model focuses a little bit more on the economic drivers.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Microsociology, Macrosociology, Functionalism and Conflict Theory – Theoretical Approaches of Social Structure (SOC) by Tarry Ahuja, PhD is from the course Understanding Social Structure.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Macrosociology
    2. Microsociology
    3. Global sociology
    4. Cliodynamics
    5. Social stratification
    1. Microsociology
    2. Functionalism
    3. Social constructionism
    4. Feminism
    5. Interpersonal psychology
    1. It focuses on economic factors.
    2. It allows for negotiations and treaties.
    3. It can be interdependent.
    4. It can exist in equilibrium.
    5. It is necessary for a stable society.

    Author of lecture Microsociology, Macrosociology, Functionalism and Conflict Theory – Theoretical Approaches of Social Structure (SOC)

     Tarry Ahuja, PhD

    Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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