Theoretical Perspectives in Sociology and Taking Science Canteen as Example

Essay by chinweiUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, November 2004

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What is society like? Is it full of tension, uncertainty and conflict or is it characterized by agreement and co-operation? Different people may have different view towards a same situation. In fact there are many competing perspectives in sociology, based on different assumptions each perspective has about the world and reality. In this paper, the scenario that will focus on is Science Canteen of NUS which shared by students and staffs from Faculty of Science, Medicine, Dentistry and School of Computing.

First we analyze this small society (Science Canteen) from the concensus perspective. The first assumption that we have made is that this society is integrated. It is made up of parts and structures that perform specific but cooperative, independent functions. In the Science Canteen, there are different stalls that sell different food. For example, chicken rice, Chinese food, Indian food, Muslim food, western food, fruit, noodles etc. Besides that there are cleaners who help to clean up tables and wash plates and bowls.

Besides that there are students and staffs who come and buy food here. All of them have different roles to play. They are at all time harmonious, stable, peaceful, in the state of equilibrium. This is also a form of organic solidarity, an interdependence that is based on a complex division of labor. They are interconnected because differences in their skills and roles make them need each other to survive. If they, customers don't come and buy food, the stalls cannot survive. The cleaner will lose job. In the others hand, if the stalls do not provide food, the students and staffs will be hungry, and have to walk far to NUH staff Canteen, NUH Canteen, SRC Canteen, YIH Canteen, or further canteens like Arts Canteen and Bizad Canteen to get their food.

Students who...