9.18.07 Tues - Outline 1 Critiques of Parsonian...

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Outline: 1. Critiques of Parsonian functionalism 2. Merton: middle range theory 3. Social dysfunction 4. Functional alternatives 5. Manifest and latent functions Critiques of Parsonian functionalism - Circular reasoning : explaining by functions EG b/c all societies have a need for security that explains why we have a criminal justice system. – Seeing a “need” doesn’t explain “why” it came to be. All societies have a need for security but that doesn’t explain why we have a particular type of security. - Conflict: roles not necessarily “complementary” – Systems may contradict each other. - Normative view of equilibrium: -leads to implicit support of the status quo - End up neglecting big social issues EG: inequality, exclusion, oppression, conflicts of interest? – When might system integration and equilibrium Not be a good thing? Slavery, communism, etc. Middle Range Theory
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9.18.07 Tues - Outline 1 Critiques of Parsonian...

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