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Theory discussion: conflict theory & structural functionalism

Choose one of the three sociological theories: structural functional, conflict or symbolic interaction. Explain garage sales by applying the theory you have chosen. Be sure to include in your answer the assumptions that go with the theory and relate them to garage sales.

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Here are 2 theories:

A Conflict theory:
I. Definition of conflict theory:
Conflict theory: this theory basically says that in society everyone functions to maximize their own benefits. Social/ political change, it is argued, is brought about due to this desire by groups to maximize their benefits.

Marxism, radical feminism is some examples of this theory.

II. The 3 major assumptions of conflict theory are:
a) Competition is at the heart of all social relationships (rather then consensus, individuals in society form relationships by competing - e.g. competing for jobs, for partners etc)

b) There are structural inequalities in all social structures. There is always some with more power then others, in other words. Those that benefit from a certain social structure want to maintain it.

c) Change happens as a consequence of revolution not evolution. Human beings don't adapt to change, they revolt and that's how change happens.

III. In a garage sale context, this theory would play out as follows: there is the interest of the seller and the interest of the different ...

Solution Summary

The solution discusses three theories in terms of how they would affect a garage sale. The theories are structural functionalism, symbolic interactionism and conflict theory. The text contains 742 words.

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