Theory Term Paper:
Conflict theory is the theoretical explanation of the cause of a conflict. Nowadays conflicts are the target of the research in the field of sociology, though the first tries to explain the sources of conflicts were noticed hundreds of years ago.
There were theories observing a human society as a single well-organized conflict or the competition between different social groups, individuals, social classes, countries, religions, generations and genders. For example, the famous English philosopher Thomas Hobbes believed that conflict is the most important element in the human life as it is present in every sphere of the human activity; so he did not hesitate to say that all people are enemies having created the concept of “war of all against all”.
Herbert Spencer observed the problem of conflicts as the process of natural selection, during which only the best people remain as winners.
Spencer’s contemporary Karl Marx observed the problem of conflict in a different way. He stated that the model of social behaviour is the best example of the process of conflict during which there is the constant struggle for the resources between different social classes. These three philosophers observed the global or general idea of conflict failing to focus on the definite examples in the boarders of the small social groups.
This approach was applied by Georg Simmel. He came to the conclusion that the conflicts between the people of the single social group are much more severe than between the representatives of different social groups who do not share the common values. All these ideas influenced the creation of the most important conflict theories of Lewis Alfred Coser, Ralf Gustav Dahrendorf and Kenneth Ewart Boulding.
Conflict theory is the attempts to explain the source of conflicts from the point of view of theoretic materials. It is possible to prepare a successful term paper about the problem which would observe all the main and minor conflict theories. The student will need to observe the peculiarities of all the theories and define his own vision of the cause of conflicts of different types. One can dwell on the problem from the point of view of history and linear development of the issue.
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