Essay on What You Know About This

606 Words Jul 13th, 2012 3 Pages
Dorothy Robinson
Culture and Society
May 13, 2012
Wendell Johnson

The social situation that I would like to address in this essay is the problem of crime in our society. We all know that crime is on the rise, most likely due to inequalities in race, education, social class, skills, financial status, and religious beliefs and values. Of course, both functionalists and conflict theorists are marco-level, but have differing views on the reasons for, and reactions to, crime in our society today. Interactionist on the other had is micro-level, meaning it is not that useful to the world.

Functionalists believe that crime is important for a society. Crime shows other member of the society what is right and wrong. Social agreement
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The poor also lack education, skills, and the strong support systems that are necessary for individuals to become productive, valued members of society. Not all crimes are the direct result of oppression and the powerful do not always seek to punish people in other classes.

The Symbolic Interactionist theory, promoted by George Herbert Mead and Charles H. Cooley, is concerned with the meanings that people places are on their own and others' behavior. Unlike functionalists, interactionists focus on subjective aspects of social life, instead of the objective structural aspects of social systems. For interactionists, focus is shifted away from stable norms and values, and toward continually readjusting social processes. Criminal activity, like any behavior is learned through interaction. Involvement in deviant groups teaches people that crime is okay and teaches us the skills to engage in it. Crime is also promoted through comparison with others around them. If they their friends have material goods, they might be influenced to engage in criminal behavior in order to obtain these things. Most interactionists will argue, if crime is learned than it can be unlearned.

Functionalism highlights order and cohesion of society as the backbone of social order. Conflict theorists emphasize inequality and power in society as the ruling power of the masses. Finally, Symbolic Interactionists emphasize the

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