A society comprises, among other sections of the economy, education, government, medicine, media, and families, working together. The interaction between these parts can be understood on the basis of different sociological theories, namely functionalism, conflict, symbolic theories of interaction and feminism (Benokraitis 13-15). Different hypotheses, however, relate to various cultures. The conflict theory, for instance, refers to societies marked by recurrent conflicts between the components. Based on the principle of functionalism, the United States’ operations can be understood. The functionalism theory emphasize that a society is a complex system that comprise of interdependent parts that work together to ensure survival (Benokraitis 13). The education system in the U.S. equips people with knowledge and skills to enable them contribute to the economy. These intended and acknowledged consequences are called manifest function (Benokraitis 14). On the other hand, the U.S., government funds education. Indeed, the U.S.’s government spending on education has increased significantly over the last decade. According to Lin and Boris, the federal funding has increased by more than 36% since 2002 (267-268). In turn, education equips people with knowledge, skills, and attitude to participate in the government. The government also funds about 60% of the healthcare cost through programs such as Medicaid and Medicare.
Families provide people to run the government, economy, and the education sector (Ferrante 330-331). Colleges also offer places for young adults to meet prospective mates leading to marriage and families. Public elementary schools also act as babysitters for employed parents. However, functions such as mate-selection and baby-sitting functions are unintended and not commonly recognized thus they are called latent functions.
In conclusion, functionalism theory best explains how the U.S. operates. All the parts in the society in the U.S. are interdependent. As such, if any part does not function well, the entire society might be at risk of collapsing.
Benokraitis, V. Nijole. Soc. Boston: Cengage Learning, 2015. Print.
Ferrante, W. Joan. Sociology: A Global Perspective. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth, 2008. Print.
Lin, Y. Justin, and Boris Pleskovic. Annual World Bank Conference on Development Economics: People, Politics, and Globalization. Washington, DC: World Bank, 2010. Print.