Micro and Macro Theories


Micro Theories-  looks at individuals and the impact of society on people

  • social action theories
  • symbolic interactionalism
  • phemonolgy theory
  • dramaturgical theory
  • ethnomethodology theory

Macro Theories-  looks at society as a whole and how indivudals act and interact with others

  • Consensus Theories; functionalism
  • Conflict Theories; marxism (& neo-marxism) and feminism (liberal, radical, marxist and intersectionalist)


  • consensus theory which sees society as a system of inter-connected parts/ social institutions which have to work together as a whole in order for society to function- much like the human body
  • 'Organic Analogy'; all parts of society have specific functions in order to maintain social order and achieve a consensus through shared norms and values. 
  • Functionalism sees social structure and the organisation of society as more important than the individual. 
  • They argue that society has certain functional prerequisites (certain basic needs/requirements) that must be met for society to survive. (this includes production of food, the care of the young and the socialisation of the next generation into the culture of society)
  • Criticisms; doesn't account for social change, not updated


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