- Conflict between the ruling class and the working class
- Seen as a conservative force
- Keeps society as it is
- 'legitimates, reproduces and maintains class inequality'
- An ideological apparatus to transmit the ruling class ideas and interests.
- Religion seen as 'opium of the people' - brainwashes the working class
- They then enter a false class consciousness where they are unaware of the true nature of the exploitation.
- Ideological apparatus -
- Legitimating social inequality
- Disguising the true nature of the exploitation
- Keeping the working class passive and resigned to their fate
- Halevy (1927) - Europian revolution
- Leach (1988) - 'Church of the Ruling Class' - heads of the Church graduate from Oxbride.
- Hook (1990) - Influence of the Pope.
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- Fails to explain secularisation
- Not always a servant to the ruling class.
- Not central to people's lives anymore
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