Social Aspects of Sport

Sociology is the study of a society and first started in France and England by a Frenchman called Emile Durkheim, the surfs migrated to the towns to work therefore forming societies, these societies had different levels of class of society and middle class and working class was formed, the working class where called Proletarians and the middle class where called the Bourgeoisie. Marxism: Marxism is made up of the belief that the small minority of elite class takes advantage of the majority of the lower class population in the society.

The majority of the working class work long and hard in their jobs to buy things that make them happy, and play in sports now and again to distract them from the work that they have to do. The Marxist theory is named after the creator a German sociologist called Karl Marx from the 1800s, this theory became very popular in the 1970s when functionalism came into things, as Marxism offered answers to the problems that functionalism couldn’t answer.

The Marxist theory is the understanding of the social relations in the structure of society. When you look at a capitalist society you see that the bourgeoisie, the people that own the factories etc and then you have the proletariat that work hard for the bourgeoisie in exchange for a wage. This shows that both sets of class in the society will exploit the relationship that they have for personal gain.

The main exploiters are the bourgeoisie who are there to gain as much output and labour as they can from the working class, where as the working class that are exploited look to improve their jobs by making working conditions, working hours, their wages better, therefore trying to take down the levels of exploitation. This can be repeated in sport, as sporting activities give the working class something else to keep their minds from thinking about their working lives.

Marxism is sometimes criticised as the society that it lives in is to dependant on the improvement of its economy. Functionalism: Functionalism works on the basis of comparing living organisms to society for example if you look at a flower without the important parts like the roots the flower will not get water to survive, also if it didn’t have its petals it wouldn’t get the sunshine that it also needs to survive, what’s being said here is that with certain things missing in a society the society will fail to work.

Functionalism was created by Emile Durkheim in the 19th century and he said that individual relationships work together to from things such as family, education, sport, crime, which work together to help the order and stability of a society. Functionalism can be criticised though as it can stress consensus between the groups in society, it also doesn’t explain society as a process and is seen as development over time and changes that take place.

Examples of this would be a family’s job is to socialise the new members that is has into society, at the same time educations job is to provide younger people with new skills that they need to carry on successfully in the workplace. Sport uses the same kind of functions as it can provide a good means of releasing anger and strong emotions that need to be vented eventually. Sport provides good chances to socialise new members into society whilst showing how to behave correctly.

It is a good time for interacting people into groups of society when playing a certain sport; they also provide a means between classes for performers that play sport together. Functionalism shows that you can’t take things such as education, family, sport or even crime out of the equation as society needs criminal behaviour to function properly, with legal responses to it and is seen as a good thing as without crime so many things would be lost such as jails, police officers, judges, dog handlers, the companies that make police cars, this is seen as a good thing as so much realises on crime.

Some sports such as rugby where created by someone breaking the rules of a another sport football and therefore a great sport was invented so form that you could say that breaking the rules was a good thing, but at the same time when people at the top of governing bodies like football change the offside rule for the better then actually find out when they have gone to use it in a game situation that it doesn’t work it can be seen as not so good of an idea.

Social Stratification: Social stratification is the arranging of members of a society into a pattern of inferior and superior ranks which can also be seen as the categorisation of people by money, prestige and power in a community. Often it is measured by how much money a certain person has or how good their job is and to what standing they have in life.

People at the top in class 1 would be people that are in high manager positions such as doctor’s teachers, clergy, where as people in class 2 would be people such as nurses, journalists, lower ranking police officers, and musicians. In the 3 and 4 class you would have secretaries, driving instructors, farmers, painter and decorators, whilst in group 5 to 7 you would have plumbers, shop assistants, hairdressers, labourers and waiters.

In the lowest group class 8 there would only be people that have never had paid work and are in long-term unemployment. All of this comes into what kind of people play certain sports, most people that play golf, tennis and crocket will be from the top 3 class as these sports require a lot of money to play as equipment is expensive also joining golf clubs etc is expensive in the long run and you would need a well paying job to continue playing such sports.

Where as people from below the top 3 class will tend to play in sports such as rugby, football, rowing, running, darts, pool, and snooker as theses sorts of sports are not as expensive to get into and are more widely to played so it makes it easier to get involved also a labourer for example would probably only be able to play their sport once a week as the rest of the time they are working long hard hours as they aren’t paid as well and need to work more to gain enough money to survive.

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