Marxism vs Functionalism

Topics: Marxism, Karl Marx, Social class Pages: 5 (1925 words) Published: April 25, 2013
In this assignment I was asked to look at my society and how I view it, analyse it, understand it and evaluate it. With theories and theorist on society available I will focus on two of the theories which are Marxism by Karl Marx & Functionalism by Skinner. Karl Marx, the man was a genius. The man was not blind, most people are blind, we look but we cannot see and when we do see, we change how we see to make ourselves feel better or we change and explain things so we can have some sort of illusion of control over the situation. That is what we do as humans we try and control every aspect of our lives, we have a curse and that is the curse of choice so being told that we are not the controllers of our destinies is something that we cannot comprehend and that is what Karl Marx said. According to Marx we live in an illusion of false consciousness, we like to believe that it’s all fair ground so play ball. We tell our children that if they work hard then they can be the prime minister or whatever they want to be and that unfortunately is not the case. In today’s society we are split, we live in a society where 1% rules over the 99%, we are the 99%, the teachers, the policeman, the petty bourgeoisie and the students. We know this yet we accept it. The workers work and the bosses get rich and the bosses look at the workers as replaceable commodities that are there to be an asset and to be done away with as soon as they start negatively affecting the profit margin. These are the views of Karl Marx and they are endorsed in his theory of Marxism, one of the two theories that I will be comparing. We are all working together towards reaching a goal. As a society we are part of the same body that is working to maintain its self and better yourself, this is the viewpoint of functionalism, it states that “society is depicted as a more or less harmonious and integrated ‘whole’ with every social constitution serving a particular function” taylor,p,1995.sociology in focus.1st ed.ormskirk: the Bath Press .Those are the views of the functionalist and I am here to compare and contrast these two theories. Firstly I identify with both these theories, I understand them both and on some level i agree with them both. In this society we work for want more than need, we have made our way of life more complicated than it needs be so there is always a constant need for something that past civilisations did without but I guess that is evolution. If there was no treasure to do the maths and probably mess it up then there wouldn’t be a tax man whose purpose is to take your money from you to provide services like the council, police ambulances and fire services. In that perspective I would be looking at the functionalist when the theory states we all work as a body because if there was a link missing from that chain then either the service would not be available because there is no money to pay for it because someone hasn’t done their part. In that same example I will look at how a Marxist would look at it and he would say look at all these services that we have and have to pay for but have not asked for, the sole purpose of these services it to keep the working class working and spending the little they earn without the possibility of parole from their lifestyle or upgrade as Karl Marx said “it is the employer’s best interest to keep the wages low and spending high” What Is Marxism? Understanding Marxist economics. 2012. What Is Marxism? Understanding Marxist economics. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 02 November 2012]. With that example that is my pedestal that I put the two theories on and hold them on .Marx believed workers create the wealth and the only reason that the gap remains vast between the bourgeoisies and the proletariats is because of capitalism or greed in laymen’s terms. Mark would say that the employer’s speciality is making sure that the employee never learns his value and therefore...
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