Analysis Of Emile Durkheim's The Elementary Forms Of Religious Life

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Emile Durkheim was an influential figure in the French school of Sociology. In his piece “The Elementary Forms of Religious life” (1912), Durkheim examines religion not exclusively as pertaining to church, but instead as an important societal function (Appelrouth and Edles 2016). “He sought to explain why the moral realm focused so much on religion” (Appelrouth and Edles 2016). In his book, Emile Durkheim uses concepts such as social facts, the moral code, symbols, and the distinction between sacred, and profane objects to demonstrate the connection between social life and religion. In his book “The Elementary Forms of Religious life” (1912), Durkheim says that social life is naturally religious. He explains that religious force is a result of collective action. He continues that the feeling of awe that is experienced …show more content…
According to Durkheim religion allows people in a society to feel unity and solidarity. He says that it provides comfort because it allows for an explanation to things (such as feelings, thoughts, or actions) that are difficult to interpret without the use of churchlike religion. According to Durkheim, religion is crucial to our social system because it helps reinforce the morals and norms of a given society (Appelrouth and Edles 2106). Durkheim says that religion has the power to encode the system of relations pertaining to a group. Further, he states that in its social function, religion reaffirms the moral code (or the ideas and attitudes that keep society together) (Durkheim in Appelrouth and Edles 2016). One example of this is in the school institution, schools teach young children to wait in line, respect authority figures (such as

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