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Lesson 11

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Darryl Burgwin

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SY203- Lesson 11 Major Themes of Modern Social Life Anomie and Alienation Alienation is a term which derives from the conflict perspective and is a term used by Marx, whereas the term anomie is derived from the consensus perspective and is used by Durkheim. Individualism Joseph de Maistre (1880) and Henri Saint-Simon (1820) were the first to use the term to criticize the developments of the Enlightenment and the glorification of the individual over social institutions Individualism, then, is the name given to the overall social process of the political and economic separation of individuals from large corporate groups. Two basic forces were at work to bring these changes about: (i) First, rights assigned to individuals after the revolution in France began to dissolve the old proprietary powers inherent in corporate bodies. (ii) Second, as a result of the French revolution, all corporate bodies were abolished and their powers, rights and prerogatives transferred as legal entitlement to individuals. What was once corporate and collective was suddenly centered on the individual. In French social thought in particular, individualism was seen as a threat to aggregate social maintenance and many believed that it would undermine the political and economic order of society History of the Term Anomie The term 'anomie' came into prominence in France in the latter half of the 19th century, and was used to refer to a general social malaise taking place within the overall structure of society Durkheim's methodological interest to show that the problematic of individualism could, in fact, be explained socially. This explanation took place on two differe
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