Talcott Parsons


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Spent a Few Hours Deconstructing Structural Functionalism (Parson's brand)

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  • AS an university lecturer i need this types of sociological article, which will help me lot, Please sent me the related ppt of Malinoswki related to tructural functionasilm if possible. Thank you
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Talcott Parsons

  1. 1. Talcott Parsons (1902-1979) Presentation by : Paul Richardson
  2. 2. Primary Analysis <ul><li>Strengths (7 mins) </li></ul><ul><li>Weaknesses (7 mins) </li></ul><ul><li>How improves understanding (7 mins) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How (process description) improves understanding (learning) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I will describe the way (process) we learn from this article </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Section Title: Learning Process Description </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How author presents findings (7 mins) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The method, the format, and the strategy of argument. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Section Title: Presentation Methodology </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What is learned about ed. phil. (7 mins) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Description of the knowledge, it's type & contents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Section Title: Epistemological Characteristics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Discussion Questions (10 minutes) </li></ul>
  3. 3. Additional Materials <ul><li>Following slides only covered if time permits </li></ul><ul><li>(all following slide materials “ripped” off the internet) </li></ul>
  4. 4. Biographical Background <ul><li>Youngest of five children. (Gordon Allport) </li></ul><ul><li>His father was a congregational minister and professor at Colorado College. </li></ul><ul><li>His mother was a progressivist and a suffragist. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Background <ul><li>His father was dismissed from Colorado College, he moved family to New York City (shifting around) </li></ul><ul><li>Began his career as a biologist and later became interested in economics and sociology. </li></ul><ul><li>Talcott graduated from Amherst in 1924 and a year later entered the London School of Economic. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Background <ul><li>He studied with Bronislaw Malinowski, L.T. Hobhouse, and Morris Ginsberg in London </li></ul><ul><li>Received scholarship from the University of Heidelberg (Germany) </li></ul><ul><li>He was greatly influenced by Weber. </li></ul><ul><li>After doctorate: taught at Amherst and then Harvard University </li></ul>
  7. 7. Harvard <ul><li>Worked with Gordon Allport, Henry Murray, and Clyde Kluckhohn in 1945 to establish the Department of Social Relations. </li></ul><ul><li>Department became famous </li></ul><ul><li>Talcott: chair for first ten years, then still active in the department until its dissolution in 1972. </li></ul><ul><li>A year later he retired as Emeritus Proffesor. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Major Works - Timeframe <ul><li>The Structure of Social Action (1937) </li></ul><ul><li>The Social System and Toward a General Theory of Action (1951) </li></ul><ul><li>Essay in Sociological Theory (1949, 1954) </li></ul><ul><li>Working Papers in the Theory of Acton (1953) </li></ul><ul><li>Structure and Process in Modern Society (1960) </li></ul><ul><li>Most prolific during 1950’s & 1960’s </li></ul><ul><li>This current article: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evolutionary Universals in Society (1964) </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Functionalism Background <ul><li>In 1950s and 1960 Functionalism reigned as the dominant theoretical perspective in sociology. </li></ul><ul><li>Is often referred to as structural functionalism because of its dual focus on the structural forces that shape human behavior and the attention given to system needs. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Intellectual Influences <ul><li>London School of Economics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hobhouse </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Evolution of Morality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ginsberg </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Economic institutions of preliterate societies </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Malinowski </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Structural-functional analysis in anthropology </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Parsons’ integration of all social sciences into one of human action </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Strong European influence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Two particular influences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Max Weber </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Emile Durkheim </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Intellectual Influences <ul><li>Max Weber </li></ul><ul><li>Greatest influence on Parsons </li></ul><ul><li>Dissertation, “Concept of Capitalism”, based primarily on Weber’s work </li></ul><ul><li>Marx’s Reductionist Approach </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tied strictly to economics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Overly simplistic and unrealistic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First major link of value systems and social structures </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Philosophy- Talcott Parsons <ul><li>Realism v. Idealism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Idealist - An act is always a process in time, and that the concept “end” always implies a future reference to a state or situation that does not exist yet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Realism v. Nominalism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Realism – The relations between actors are essentially the structure of the social system </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Idealism v. Materialism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Materialist – Interrelated parts contribute to the functioning of the whole system </li></ul></ul>