Sociological Theory

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Topics: Sociology
INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGICAL THEORY
Compare and contrast the views of three appropriate sociological perspectives to an area of social life of your choosing. Why do we act the way we do? Does the mass media really affect the way a people in a society behave? Sociologists focus on the environment and the social aspects of human behaviour in order to answer questions like these when studying a particular society. A society is defined as a large social group that shares the same geographical territory and is governed by the same political authority and cultural expectations. Culture is defined as the shared values of a society such as language, beliefs and ways of doing things (Burton, 2013, online). When looking at a society there are many different sociological perspectives that can be used, and as people can interpret identical things in different ways more than one perspective could be used at any time. These perspectives include: Functionalism, Marxism, Feminism, Interactionism and Postmodernism. In this paper I will be comparing and contrasting the Marxist, Functionalist and Postmodernist perspectives and applying them to analysing the effect of the mass media upon society. Is the mass media used as a way of controlling society? To begin with I will discuss what is meant by the term mass media, I will then briefly outline the principles of the three perspectives before comparing and contrasting their strengths and weaknesses. Finally I will analyse the effect the mass media has upon societies by applying the principles of these three perspectives. Mass media refers to the various media technologies that are used to communicate with the larger, socially mixed audiences. The technologies through which this communication takes place comes in many forms, including broadcast, print, outdoor and digital forms of media and each of these has their own ways of mass communication. Broadcast media would include radio, music, film and television. Print media would



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