Structuralism and Semiotics
Structuralism & semiotics, the general study of signs which developed from the structuralist program, have a complex theory of the way signs work but, in essence, we may say that the categories of meaning (words) are comprised in a system of binary oppositions: white & black, body & mind, the sacred & the profane, individual & collectivity. We are engaged, then, in the study of signs & sign systems.
Structuralism analyzes society & elements of society via binary oppositions that it sees as essential to the way the brain works. Post structuralism, on the other hand, sees this binary dualism as an aspect of Western thought & not universal. For postmodernism, meaning & the categories of thought are shifting & unstable. While using many of the fundamental ideas in structuralism, I follow the American anthropologist Roy Wagner in using the notion of trope or metaphor in the context of a phenomenology in order to map the unfolding structure of social forms.
Using linguistic sociological tools in an analysis of mysticism & some other relevant subject matter such as magic, sacrifice, ritual initiation, and so on, is difficult for several reasons. One of these is that language & the structure of society were in their origins and development completely entangled in religion and the sacred. It seems that language originally was, by its very nature & power, sacred. In addition, it is pretty clear that secular society developed out of religious society &
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Wherever you go and wherever you look you will find symbols – in the form of words, sounds, gestures, ideas or images – they are everywhere. Symbols are used to convey a particular meaning while saving on space or time. For example, everyone is familiar with the fact that a red octagon means STOP and that a tick means that something is correct or has been done well. But have you ever thought about the meaning behind some of the world’s most famous and most recognisable symbols, such as the peace sign, evil eye or the swastika?
In many national or even local events theoretical perspectives can be seen. The perspectives are structured functionalism, social conflict, and symbolic interactionalism. Each of these theoretical perspectives are the things that shape how societies and the world function. While watching the “State of the Union Address” given by President Donald Trump, the perspective become prevalent and can be easily observed. The first of the three theoretical perspectives are structured functionalism.
Within different cultures, members follow a set of strict rules that must be carried out properly when interacting with one another although they are not aware of these unspoken rules. One can become more aware of these actions when he steps out of the procedures set by his culture and behave opposite of what is expected in his culture. The act of behaving in an unexpected manner that is opposite of the norm to elicit a response is known as “Garfinkeling”, named after Harold Garfinkel (Agar, 1994, p.169). By Garfinkeling, I was able to demonstrate how eye contact and the lack of it can disrupt the sign that it carries of paying attention and also interrupt the symbolic system that takes place when asking for assistance. When Michael Agar (1994) speaks of a “sign”, he explains that it is made up of two parts, the “signifier” and the “signified”.
Structuralism, as stated by Ajandi, examines inequities in power by revealing structures as the root of problems, rather than the individual (2018). Structuralism influences on AOP; it defines itself through structural power and its wrath of inequalities on those unlike the dominant group. AOP upholds the idea of relieving the sense of blame the individual holds and identifies their problems stem from the structures and systems put in place with the intent of discriminating against them. Anti-oppressive practice goes one step further with the concepts of structuralism by expressing the dire need for communication. According to Wilson & Beresford (2000), anti-oppressive practice promotes knowledge and expertise in each situation with every different service user, as no two situations require the exact same theories and practices.
Most fields of science rely on theories to explain centrally important issues, such as social phenomena, that have a wide range of applications. Sociologists attempt to describe human society though their theories, such as the structural-functionalism theory, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionalism. While the three theories attempt to describe how society functions the way it does, all three differ in their views of how humans are related to society and each other. In the structural-functionalism, the dominant view is that if the structures that exist are functional, then those structures should be preserved and maintained. Structure-functionalists tend focus on the interrelatedness to the social structures that make up society.
Looking at society as a whole with individual units that work together to make society function efficiently is the structural functionalism concept. Each unit has a part and is describe as institutions such as family, religion, education, politics, economy and inequality. Because structural functionalism looks at social structure and patterns of behavior it is able to create values for society. As well as, distinguish between visible and suppressed problems within the social structures that may need to be addressed. For instance, homelessness is indication of dysfunction in structural functionalism system.
Living wage reflects what income required for a household to meet their basic needs, once government transfers have been added to the family's income and deductions have been subtracted. Its also a call to private and public sector employers to pay wages to both direct and contract employees sufficient to provide the basics to families with children. Living wage include gets families out of severe financial stress by lifting them out of poverty and providing a basic level of economic security. Living wage also enables working families to have sufficient income to cover reasonable costs, promotes social inclusion, supports healthy child development principles, ensures that families are not under severe financial stress, is a conservative, reasonable
Structural Functionalism is a sociological theory that tries to clarify why society functions the way it does by concentrating on the connection between the different social institutions that make up society (e.g., government, law, education, religion, etc.). In Animal Farm the first example of structural functionalism is when the boar thinks the ordinances of their society are ruled by the oppressor humans. The second example is when the traditional structure is arranged to keep the animals in captivity. Lastly, the third example is when the arrangement allows humans to always be on the receiving end.
Since religious experiences are inevitably connected with the given locations and thus cultures, they naturally impose the existence of the social relations redefined from the perspective of worship. Therefore, by invoking to the religion, the participants correlate the symbol to the macrocosm it actually represents (Greenwood, 48). This serves as a fundamental reason for using a religious symbol by an individual experiencing personal challenges. The change of perspective allows for creating its total opposite. Therefore, by “[converting] patient into priest,” victim is transformed into a powerful religious entity (Obeyesekere, 393).
(Tan 84). Peoples' communicating leads to the spread of different ideas. Language connects societies figuratively and literally. Culture and language influence people extensively which allow people to be susceptible to miscommunication when a barrier is too vast. Familial relationships disrupt from language barriers.
The collection of short stories “Ashputtle or The Mother’s Ghost: three versions of one story” has been taken from the book American Ghosts and Old World Wonders written by the Canadian feminist writer Angela Carter in 1987. Carter, known for her use of irony when writing her feminist stories so as to criticise the patriarchal society, confessed some years ago her interest in rewriting fairytales “I don’t mind being called a spell-binder. Telling stories is a perfectly honourable thing to do ... I do find imagery of fairytales very seductive and capable of innumerable interpretations” (Haffenden, 1985: 82). By making this statement, the writer clarifies her interest in retelling old fairytales using their plot to create a new story.
N. Scott Momaday is a Kiowa novelist, short story writer, essayist, and poet. He devotes his life to protect and inherit the national culture heritage, and has published a large number of Indian literature with fresh content, unique style and light homesickness. Among his numerous literary works, the early published work The Way to Rainy Mountain belongs to a prose with beautiful style of writing and sincere affection. The way to Rainy Mountain is a Momaday’s journey to seek his root. He skillfully combines the life of his grandmother and the history of the people together, with a unique perspective, rich poetic language, delicate emotions to show readers the origin, development and decline of the culture of Indian 's Kiowa people.
In the social life, language and society are two things that support each other. It is impossible if there is society without language and there is language without society, because language is a device to communicate one to another (Adam J.H, 1982; 3). There is the study to organize between language and the society that is called sociolinguistics.
From the point of view of Talcott Parsons, structural-functionalism describe a particular stage in the methodological development of social science, rather than specific school of thought. Strengthens and Weaknesses of Structural Functional Theory The strength of this theory is it can be used widely in the society. Structural functional theory can explain most of the social change as a result of changes such as population increasing and increased
In the mid 1800s, psychology was flourishing. Seemingly each new psychologist would often research mental phenomena with a slightly different perspective. In the 1890s, Edward Titchener brought Wilhelm Wundt’s psychology to the United States of America, establishing what is now known as structuralism. Generally, structuralists believe that everything within conscious experience is merely a combination of mental ingredients, which can be parsed apart via introspection (Hergenhan, 2017). Around the same time, a new school known as functionalism began to develop.