Conflict Theory And Symbolic Interaction

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The idea of society is structured around how individuals interact as a whole. When looking at these human interactions, a sociologist develops theories. A theory is defined as sets of ideas, which best explain the known facts about a topic in a way which makes sense. (Claerbaut, 2015, para. 3) Theories are testable, and when dealing with human behavior, can show how humans conduct themselves differently in groups than they do individually. Examining theories one step further leads to a theoretical perspective, which is how one sociologically views the world. The three theoretical perspectives of structural functionalism, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionism are all valid, but the world is best represented by structural functionalism …show more content…
Conflict theory is purely based upon society interacting negatively and constantly competing for power and wealth. This theory doesn’t account for the beneficial and positive interactions, which occur in society. For example, if we look at the amount of wars that have occurred a conflict theorist’s would state that the amount of wars proves the constant battle for power and wealth present in society. However what the conflict theory doesn’t account for is the years in which the world has been at peace, and even if it may not be a lot, it still proves that the world is not always in a battle over power, wealth and prestige. The opposite is the case for symbolic interaction, which is based upon the idea that constantly building and contributing ideas hold the individuals/groups in society together. If we look at the advancements in military weapons we can see this concept, for example when the U.S has a plane, which is the fastest, and most advanced, the Russian military may try to create a new plane building off this technology. Looking at this in a symbolic interactionism way, one could state that this proves that society is constantly contributing and making advancements based on social interaction, but it fails to look at the negative interactions and larger social events which took place for it to occur, like war and espionage for this example. The ideas of positive and negative interactions, and the encompassment of larger social events, are all factors which symbolic interaction embodies, making it the most accurate sociological

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