Social Action Theory

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  • Created by: chend96
  • Created on: 20-04-14 15:15
Explain the characteristics of the social action approach
It is characterised by a micro level approach- bottom up approach which focuses on the meaning and interactions invididuals give to certain situations
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What is this theory (choice and free will)?
Voluntaristic
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What are the 2 sub-sections of social action approaches?
Symbolic interactionism, ethnomethodology and phenomology
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What are the key characteristics of the structuralist theory
This theory takes a macro level, top down approach and it focuses on how society influences individuals
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What is this theory (little free will) ?
Deterministic
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What theories are structuralist?
Marxism and Functionalism
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Which sociologist outlines the general social action theory?
Max Weber
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What does he state about understanding human behaviour?
That structuralist and social action theories are both neccessary
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What 2 key concepts does he outline when explaining human behaviour?
2 levels and four types of action
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What if the first level?
Level of Cause- this is explaining objective struc0tural factors which shape and influence human beaviour
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What is the second level?
Level of Meaning- this is understanding subjective meanings which individuals attach to their actions
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What are the four types of action?
Instrumental rational action, value rational action, traditional action and affectual action
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Explain the first action
1. the actor calculates the most effective way of reaching the goal (planning/training for a mmarathon)
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Explain the second action
2. an actor wants to achieve a goal they desire and its for their own sake (worship a religion to reach heaven)
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Explain the third action
3. habitual, rational or customary action (buying a xmas tree- no goal as such)
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Explain the fourth action
This involves expressing emotion (crying if sad)
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Explain the first evaluation point
It addresses the over emphasis that marxists and functionalists place on structural factors
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Whats the second evalutation point?
Schutz- its too individualistic because it doesnt explain the shared nature of meanings- for example why gestures affect people in the same way
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What's the third evalutation point?
It's hard to apply the four types of action to society people they overlap
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Whats the fourth evaluation point?
It's very difficult to apply verstehen within practice- because you can never fully experiences situations or interactions like others- so is diffcult to thereofre understand indivduals expressions
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

What is this theory (choice and free will)?

Back

Voluntaristic

Card 3

Front

What are the 2 sub-sections of social action approaches?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What are the key characteristics of the structuralist theory

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What is this theory (little free will) ?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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