Emile Durkheim's The Division Of Labor In Society

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Emile Durkheim’s first major work The Division of Labour in Society was published in 1893. His theories were founded on the concept of social facts, defined as the norms, values and structures of a society (Melissa Hurst 2015). Durkheim’s theories were based on things external in nature as opposed to internal. Although Durkheim and Weber occupied the same space in time their respective works share little resemblance. Taking the functionalist view Durkheim believed that harmony as opposed to conflict defined society. He saw conflict as abnormal or pathological and believed that solidarity was the normal condition of society. To this end he believed that ideally people would succeed in the workplace based on merit alone and assume roles which compliment their natural abilities. The following paper will look to challenge Durkheim’s unique perspective and outdated idealisms. It cannot be denied that of the three founding fathers of Sociology, Durkheim’s name appears with vastly less frequency in the literature of modern sociology. The cause of this neglect will be discussed in the following paragraphs focusing on Solidarity, Class Conflict, the concept of Anomie and the Anomic division of labour.


Solidarity is the cohesion in society what holds it together, it is the feeling individual members have that they are a part of the whole. Within this there are two distinct types of social integration, Mechanical and Organic. Mechanical solidarity (pre-modern) achieves
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