Religion and Social Chnage

  • Created by: Millym01
  • Created on: 18-03-20 14:07

Religion as a conservative force - 
It can be seen as a conservative force in two different senses 
1. In the sense of traditional
2. Or it functions to conserve and preserve things as they are, maintaining a status quo. 

Most religions have conservative beliefs about moral issues and oppose changes that allow individuals more freedom. Catholic church forbids divorce, abortion and artificial conception. 
Most religions uphold family values, supporting a traditional patriarchal domestic division of labour. 

Religion also conserves or preserves things as they are. This view of religion is held by functionalists, Marxists and feminists. In different ways, they each argue that it contributes to social stability. 

Functionalists see religion as a conservative force maintaining social stability and preventing disintegration. 
Marxists and Feminists see religion as an ideology that supports the existing social structure and as a means of social control in the interests of the powerful:
Religion and capitalism - Marx sees religion as a conservative ideology preventing social changes. It legitimises or disguises inequality. Creating false consciousness in the working class and prevents revolution. 
Religion and patriarchy - feminists see religion as a conservative force as it legitimises patriarchal power and maintains women's subordination in the family and society. 

Weber - religion as a force for change

Weber in The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism argues that the religious beliefs of Calvinism helped to bring about major social change. The emergence of modern capitalism in Nothern Europe. 

Modern capitalism is unique because it's


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