SOCC40H3 Lecture Notes - Wage Labour, Manifest And Latent Functions And Dysfunctions, Focus Group

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Published on 25 Oct 2011
SOCC40 Lecture 5
Question Parsons wanted to ask was how do we know when a change is
positive or negative for society?
-change with evolution because people are always trying out new things
+with dress, etc.
Some changes are either positive evolutionary or negative
What criteria do we use to determine that change has occurred?
When is a change evolutionary or not- when does it lead to that animal
forming at a higher level?
-if it helps you survive
Parsons way was to go to AGIL and said we will know something is positive
evolutionary if it allows AGIL to function better at a higher level
Links differentiation with one of the four functions (AGIL)
-if it is going to be functional, does it carry out one of these functions
Differentiation + Goal
-in a household, you contribute to tasks that are for the house
-differentiation means that at some point you take out work functions out of
the house and take them somewhere else (firm)
-separates goals because now household has goals and firm has goals
-goal of the family, which is outside of the firm, is not to raise children and
meet emotional needs or husband and wife
-goal of firm is producing most at least cost
-differentiation; two different goals where there used to be one
Is this a function or upgrade from previous situation?
-look at next function adaption
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Adaptive upgrading
-about the question of whether or not this split or differentiation allows
people to achieve their goals better than they would have without the
-looks like it is positive from an economic view; in the firm people can focus
entirely on their work without distractions of family, can train specifically for a
job- don’t just have to be born in a family, bigger labour market with workers
who are more interested in that job; leads to higher performance in work
-with the family, they can now focus more directly on their internal life;
parenting and love between parenting and children, couple can focus on
romantic relationship; able to get more goods and services for lower price
and able to have deeper emotional bonds
Adaptive upgrading can cause its own problems
-when you split up organizations and institutions which previously fused
functions together; can be a major source of strain when people have to
adjust to new situations; people were traumatizes
-have to leave ancestral and family behind to go to work, family businesses
closed down, dad was working all day and all night not seeing kids, workers
couldn’t set their own schedules as much, rise of wage labour in firm; wage
capitalists vs. owners begins
Is there solution to new problem?
Solution is at inclusion
-change is positive evolutionary if you can include the results of that change
in the overall social structure; if you create mechanisms where one supports
the other
Inclusion can cause its own problems
-don’t have to be positive
-what makes differentiation positive adaptation is that firm can hire any
qualified worker; not bound to hire within family; huge influx of people
coming from different places- all flocking to live her and being included in
new roles
-drawback is that people working in factories hate each other; Protestants
and Catholics working together, or Germans and Poles
-all these different household backgrounds that are clashing
When is inclusion evolutionary?
When it’s value-generalization
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Have to come up with value that is beyond religious and other differences,
which wouldn’t feel like an imposition from the outside
Societies that were able to make value generalization work were with
-binds together workers and owners with obligations they share equally
-authorizes a lot of laws about labour relations
Not all changes are automatically evolutionary
Have to figure out when they are and when they aren’t
-AGIL helps us figure this out
Parsons was king of the hill is sociology from 30s-60s; wasn’t an easy reign;
always was being criticized
Merton became the top dog in sociology from 50s-70s
Great innovator theoretically, came up with great ideas in sociology
Founded modern sociology of science; science as a social practice
Born in 1910
Parents were Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe
His name when he was born was Meyer Schuldtnik
Was an amateur magician
-was going to name himself Merlin
-but Merton sounded like Merlin so he chose that
Robert came from Robert Houdini, who Harry Houdini took his name from;
great magician
Robert K. Merton; Robert the King Merton
invented the idea of a focus group
died in early 2000’s
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