Functionalist Perspective Essay

847 words - 3 pages

According to the text book “Social Problems: Community, Policy, and Social Action”, “A social problem is a social condition or pattern of behavior that has negative consequences for individuals, our social world, or our physical world.” (Leon, 2012, p. 8). A way to help understand and solve these problems is by taking a look at them from different perspectives, one of those perspectives is known as the functionalist perspective. “The functionalist perspective, as its name suggests, examines the functions or consequences of the structure of society” (Leon, 2012, p. 13). The functionalist perspective is just one of several other viewpoints.
The functionalist perspective differs from other perspectives because of its belief in social structures, while the feminist and conflict perspective hold true to their belief in conflict, and the interactionist perspective believes in interaction within society. With that being said, if there was any type of good order and discipline, such as laws to keep people on the straight path, society would break down from the viewpoint of the functionalist. Where as in that same scenario, feminist and conflict perspectives would say society would grow stronger due to conflict. From the interactionist perspective without laws people would have to depend on one another more for different resources causing more interaction within society. All of these perspectives take a different look at society as a whole and they also look at problems within society completely different which means their answers to resolve one issue differ tremendously. What could be consider a problem into society to one perspective may not be as important as another problem to a different perspective, like homelessness.
Homelessness runs rampant throughout society, not only in the United States but throughout the world. It effects everyone in society, men and women, young and old. In society it can cause pain to those endure it. Poverty is an obvious reason behind someone ending up homeless but numerous factors can cause poverty. As stated by Leon” A 2006 U.S. Cenus data stated, 61% of renter households below the poverty line pay more than half their income to cover housing costs. As the economy crumbles and jobs become more scarce people have to find what work they can, if they do find a job with meager wages, they will most likely fall behind on their bills or mortgage. For instance,” In 40 states, workers need to earn more than two times the minimum wage to...

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