Conflict Theories of Societal Change

Conflict Theories of Societal Change - organization becomes...

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Conflict Theories of Societal Change A. The Trigger Conflict theory tends to argue that a precipitating event is needed before change occurs . The "trigger," as Appelbaum and Chambliss (1997:421-22) call it, is something like population growth , contact with other cultures , technological advances , or changing environmental conditions . B. Contradiction and Change "All social systems have within them the seeds of their own destruction." -- paraphrase of K. Marx 1. Marx and Class Conflict All societies are seen as having built-in sources of conflict that eventually lead to a sharp break with the past. According to Marx, the trigger, inevitably involved the relationships between social classes. Under capitalism, Marx contended that conflict was inevitable in a class-relationship that pitted the interest of the working class against the owning class. Eventually, any type of society reaches a point when its social
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Unformatted text preview: organization becomes a barrier to further economic growth . Reaching this limit precipitates a revolutionary transformation of society into a new type (e.g., from feudalism to capitalism) or from capitalism to som (Appelbaum and Chambliss, 1997:422). 2. Dialectical Change Marx's concept of change is a specific example of a more general theory called dialectics. For Marx, change occurred because contradictions developed within the relationships between the two primary classes in capitalist society . More generally, contradictions can be seen as developing within any type of relationship . The contradictions appear as minor irritants at first, but as the relationship progresses the irritants become profound impediments to the relationship. Ultimately, the relationships experiences sweeping change....
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