Conflict and Change

Conflict and Change - powerful also are designed to keep...

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Conflict and Change As a result of tension, hostility, competition, and disagreements over goals and values, change is one of the basic features in society. In general, change occurs because of inequality and the battle over scarce resources. Conflict occurs because people want things (power, wealth, and prestige) that are in short supply. One should realize that conflict is not intrinsically bad. Conflict provides grounds where people unite in order that they may act on their common interests. Conflict is the motor for desirable change. B. Who Benefits? Like the functionalists, conflict theorists recognize the existence of social structures, but instead of structures existing for the good of the whole system, social structures (institutions) serve the interests of the powerful. One should also recognize the flip side of this coin. Structures that serve the
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Unformatted text preview: powerful also are designed to keep other groups in society in their place for the privilege of others. Instead of following the functionalist path of addressing dysfunction (i.e. something that doesn't work) conflict theorists would ask "Who Benefits?" Example: Acid rain Acid rain is not "bad" for everyone. The powerful people who control polluting industries stand to make huge profits by not providing proper air purification. C. Ideology Cooperation is not assumed. • The idea of society being an integrated system based on consensus is a manufactured idea. • The powerful influence or coerce the rest of the population into compliance and conformity. • Social order is maintained, not by popular agreement, but rather by the direct or indirect exercise of power."...
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This note was uploaded on 11/08/2011 for the course SCIE SYG2000 taught by Professor Bernhardt during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.

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Conflict and Change - powerful also are designed to keep...

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