Tag Archives: social theory

Sociological Theories of Consumerism and Consumption

Many of us spend a lot of time thinking about the things we might consume, and how we might consume them, and we do this not only as individuals, but as friends, partners, and families, and so intensely do we … Continue reading

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Post and Late Modern Perspectives on Society and Identity

This is intended to be an uber-brief summary, for fuller accounts please see other relevant posts.  The postmodern view of society  Globalisation destablises social structures Consumer culture floats free from other institutions The media and hyperreality are important There is much … Continue reading

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Althusser’s Scientific Marxism

While humanistic Marxists see humans as creative beings, able to make history through their conscious actions, for structuralist Marxists, it is social structures that shape human action, and we should be researching structures not individuals. The most important structural Marxist … Continue reading

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Gramsci’s Humanist Marxism

Gramsci (1891-1937) was the first leader of the Italian Communist Party during the 20s. He introduced the concept of hegemony or ideological and moral leadership of society, to explain how the ruling class maintains its position and argued that the … Continue reading

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Robert Merton’s Internal Critique of Functionalism

Criticisms of Parson’s systems theory have come from both outside and inside Functionalist. Within Functionalism, the most significant criticisms come from Robert K. Merton (1968). He criticises three key assumptions of Parsons. Indispensability – Parsons assumes that everything in society … Continue reading

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Post-Modernity and Postmodernism

‘Post-modernity’ refers to the view that the institutions and ways of living characteristic of modernity have been replaced by new institutional features to such a profound extent that it is no longer plausible to look at the 21st century as … Continue reading

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Neoliberalism and The New Right – An Introduction

What is Neoliberalism? Neoliberalism is a pro-capitalist economic theory which believes that the ‘free market’ in capitalist economies is the best basis for organising society. Free market economies are based upon the choices individuals make when spending their money. The … Continue reading

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Marx: Key Ideas for AS Sociology

The Marxist Perspective is a central theory within A level Sociology. This post outlines some of the key concepts of Karl Marx such as his ideas about the social class structure, his criticisms of capitalism and communism as an alternative. … Continue reading

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