Answer to Question #253540 in Sociology for TLITLI

Question #253540

 Briefly discuss the conflict, functionalist and symbolic interactionist theoretical approaches to health and illness 

Expert's answer


According to the functionalist viewpoint, health is essential to societal stability, and hence illness is a sanctioned kind of deviance. To begin with, she did not choose to be unwell. Therefore she should not be held accountable for it. A sick person also has the right to be excused from typical social duties; she is not obligated to meet the obligations of a healthy person and is free to forego her regular responsibilities.

Viewpoint on a Conflict

According to conflict theorists, problems with the healthcare system, like most other social problems, are inherent in capitalist society.

As a result, they ensure that they will have access to healthcare while also ensuring that subordinate groups remain subordinate due to a lack of access.

Interactionism using Symbols

Health and illness, according to theorists working in this field, are both socially created. As we stated at the start of the chapter, Interactionists are interested in the distinctive meanings and reasons that people attach to sickness. The process of turning "poor" behaviour into "ill" behaviour is referred to as the medicalization of deviance. Demedicalization is a related process in which "ill" conduct is normalized again.

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