Structural Functionalism Structural functionalism is also known as simple functionalism in the sociological and anthropological realm. The term structural functionalism refers to the interrelated parts of both sociology and anthropology. Functionalism refers to society as a whole regarding norms, customs, beliefs, traditions and institutions. Herbert Spencer referred to these parts of society as organs that must function together properly so the body can function properly. Auguste Comte during the French Revolutions went a step further than Spencer by stressing that there must be cohesion after the revolution. Emile Durkheim developed his theory of organic solidarity on Spencer’s and Comte’s theory. Marcel Mauss , Bronislaw Malinowski and...The end:
.....ogy that social environment may support the existence of certain social institutions, but such support does not cause the existence of said social institutions ( Ritzer 108-112). Influential structural theorists include Hebert Spencer, Emile Durkheim, Talcot Parsons, Robert K. Merton, Bronislaw Malinowski, Alfred Reginald Radcliffe-Brown, Nicklas Luhmann , George Murdock, Fei Xiaotong and David Keen. Although this essay does not deconstruct every influential theorist in relation to structural functionalism there has been a succinct collection of definitions and criticisms of the theory to understand it continued influence in spite of its limitations. Works Cited Ritzer , George. Modern Sociological Theory. 7th ed. Boston: McGraw-Hill, 2008.