Durkheim and the interpretation of the modern world

Durkheim and the interpretation of the modern world

Emile Durkheim’s concern for a macro level understanding of the history of society has been vividly interpreted by him resulting into a classical work in the history of sociological interpretation of the social human paradigm, unforgettably titled as the ‘The Division of Labour in Society’.

A general interpretation of the term, for many of us, encapsulates the idea of dividing the basic human work based on gender, class, caste, age, to name a few. The Durkheimian interpretation on the other hand, as such, as far as the division of labour is concerned, carries a whole lot of functional essence with it. Durkheim having witnessed society’s gradual transformation, especially concerning 19th century Europe, where science became the alternate messiah, catalysed the process of scientific innovations coupled with the age of reason. Human society to speak of has been from time immemorial undergone a gradual transformation. The evolution of the human society purposely speaking on the line of functional perspective has never been about contradiction, which Marx depicts, but it rather upholds the principle of equilibrium.

A functional perspective of societal change though create a utopian image about the society, one can hardly brush aside the societal change more importantly brought about by the scientific achievements and the massive logistic potential inherent in the human biological genes . Change though for most of the time has been confronted with conflict; it is to be understood as not an invariably affair. The very contradictions in our work, personality, needs, wants, culture, and values or more precisely in our societal structure shall always compel us towards the need for a greater integration. Society as such cannot survive without a binary opposition. Human dependency, whether it is on the grounds of economy, political or social, one completes the other. Collectively as such might be an ardours task to get hold of, it might be low in intensity but never absent from the realm of human social world. Its subtle way of functioning has made possible the sustenance of humans as a social being.

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