conflict theory


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conflict theory

  1. any theory or collection of theories which emphasizes the role of CONFLICT (especially between groups and classes) in human societies.
  2. more specifically, the relatively diffuse collection of theories that, in the 1960s, were ranged against, and contested the dominance of, Parsonian STRUCTURAL-FUNCTIONALISM and its emphasis on societies as mainly governed by value consensus and the internalization of institutionalized shared values. The main feature of such conflict theories was that:
  1. they accused functionalist sociologies of disregarding conflicts of value and interest in human societies, or at best regarding these as a secondary phenomenon;
  2. as an alternative to functionalism, they offered an account of both the integration of society and of social change which emphasized the role of POWER and COERCION and the pursuit of economic and political interests in human affairs, as well as the more general role of conflict.
While some versions of conflict theory were Marxist or influenced by Marxism (e.g. GOULDNER), others were not, and were advanced on a more eclectic basis. One important approach, for example, was based on the work of SIMMEL (e.g. Lewis Coser, 1956) and emphasized the social functions as well as the disruptive effects of conflict. Still others (e.g. DAHRENDORF, REX) emphasized the significance of WEBER as well as of Marx in the study of conflict. In a highly influential article (‘Social integration and system integration’, 1964), David LOCKWOOD underlined the importance of an approach in which conflict was more central than in functionalism, when he drew attention once again to the existence of ‘social conflicts’ and ‘system contradictions’, as well as ‘social integration’ and ‘system integration’, as major elements in social life (see also SOCIAL INTEGRATION AND SYSTEM INTEGRATION). In the 1970s and subsequently with the reflourishing of a full range of conflict theories, simple distinctions between ‘functionalism’ and ‘conflict theory’ are no longer important, and with this the usage of ‘conflict theory’ in sense 2 has faded.
References in periodicals archive ?
Brain of Angel Delight" which referenced her "bizarre Syrian conflict theory" and stated that her, "heavenly strains have become the hectoring rant of a political activist striving to reinvent herself as a mouthpiece of the poor - and risking simply sounding like an idiot".
Brain of Angel Delight" which referenced her "bizarre Syrian conflict theory" and stated that her "heavenly strains have become the hectoring rant of a political activist striving to rein-vent herself as a mouthpiece of the poor - and risking simply sounding like an idiot".
Each chapter addresses the social problem from the perspective of the general theoretical approaches of structural functionalism, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionism, as well as in-depth analysis of specialized theories.
If you want to know exactly what is being discussed, you will have to first work out whether you are in a Psychological context, or whether you are conversing in what seems to be the now slightly trendier field of 'Conflict Theory'.
Feminist Peace and Conflict Theory reflects on the need of visibility of women in conflicts and has led to a broader understanding of security issues.
I call a second theory (http://smartphoneloveaffair.com/) "Smartphone Conflict Theory ." Simply put, the device is a source of conflict and leads to fighting.
To illustrate this problem, I am going to present "moral conflict theory," by Barnett Pearce and Stephen Littlejohn (1997) that fits into at least four of the seven traditions.
The second part is focused on theoretical framework highlighting social disorganization theory and social conflict theory. A general overview of the Kanun and blood feud including its twisted version and new incarnated blood feud is presented in the third part.
We utilized the role conflict theory (Greenhaus & Beutell, 1985) to frame the analysis.
This phenomenon is quite relevant to Karl Marx conflict theory which confirms that power group has access to resources and life chances which unprivileged have not.
Interorganizational or interpersonal conflict is often viewed as negative or destructive, although recent trends in conflict theory have attempted to change those perceptions.

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