An Overview of Different Sociological Approaches

Social Problem

The act of unwanted, aggressive behavior, characterized by real or perceived power imbalances is common throughout our lives. Bullying behavior is often repeated by those who carry it out to their fellows if no immediate action is taken. The bullying action is characterized by a lot of activities such as making of threats, physical and verbal attacks, rumor-mongering, and being excluded from a particular group of people, more so, age mates, The act also affects many people, ranging from children, adolescents, and adults.

Unfortunately, I have experienced the same problem of racially motivated bullying at some point in my life, having to cope with its severe effects on my well being.

The Reasons Why I Became a Victim

I became a victim of a racially motivated bullying at my place of work as an intern, where a group of workmates used aggressive and unreasonable behavior against me The nature of the bullying was similar to the childhood bullying, except that the bullying was at a workplace The bullying was racially motivated, alongside being motivated by selfishness and the desire of the individuals to advance themselves, while sacrificing my career and financial stability in the process Some of the workplace bullying tactics used by the colleagues could not be noted by the upper-level management although they were damaging my personality as 1 continued to practice my career at the organization.

For instance, the co-workers were extremely rude to me such that I feared to seek for any form of assistance from the group of selfish employs.

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Given that the majority of the employees at the organization were whites, I found it difficult to cope with the working environment since the workers seemed to lack trust with my presence at the organization, I believe the bullying was racially motivated since I was a black intern, working amongst white employees who would talk down to me and occasionally scream at me when I commit an offense. I believe the employees could have found a better way of correcting their interns apart from having to use the bullying tactics. Throughout my internship, I was an alienated and isolated target, making me feel unwanted by the co-workersl Moreover, there are individuals who were very good in gossiping and spreading malicious rumors concerning isolated targets like the interns. It is the top level management that came to my rescue by making available the appropriate resources and amenities in a fair manners Although I was provided with the right materials, I was exposed to sabotage of work projects that in the long run became very hectic and demoralizing. I believe the tactics implemented by the bullies at the organization I interned were aimed at sending me home or rather terminating my internship.

The character assassination that was used by the colleges in an attempt to tarnish my name was to influence other co-workers to join the move and terminate my internship as a team, The humiliation and intimidation by the colleagues made me reluctant to report the issue to the top level management because I believed the bosses were also out of controls The roles carried out by the co-workers in the organization made it very difficult to survive without coming into contact with them

What a Conflict Theorist, Symbolic Interactionist, or Functionalist Would Say About What Happened

Functionalists would describe the effects of the social elements revolving around what happened as dysfunctionalr According to the functionalists, the elements of a society are functional if they contribute to the social stability of the whole society. If the elements are dysfunctional, they disrupt the stability that already existed in the society. For instance, before my internship at the organization, I believe there was peace and stability since all the social elements were aimed at developing the organization’s structure and financial stability. It is after my appointment as an intern that the social elements from the co-workers led to the formulation of policies that were intended to destroy me.

The social element of racially motivated bullying, therefore, made the social elements in the entire organization dysfunctional The poor working environment for interns and pressure from colleagues led to the fear that could cause harm to the organization Functionalists could also say that the racially motivated crime was functional to the organization due to the heightened awareness of shared moral bonds and increased social cohesion (Mooney, Knox, and Schacht, 2007) Conflict theorists would support what happened on the basis that it forms part of the ever changing society.

The conflict theorists argue that social conflict between groups in the society form the potential for inequality to exist For instance, the problem of bullying in the organization was due to the conflict between the experienced employees and me as an intern. The social theorists would state that the conflict would create room for changes in the organization; some people have to be on top of other colleagues in terms of work experience, resulting to the racial and social inequality. Again, conflict theorists would commend the bullying problem as a platform for creating conflicting ideas and agendas that would cause competition in the organization. As per the theorists’ arguments, it is the constant competition that forms the basis of the constantly changing nature of the society.

Again, the conflict theorists would claim that the problem I experienced as an intern was significant in creating the division of the society into two broad classes; those who have and those who lack, While the gap would exist, it would be beneficial to the owners of the means of production since I was denied access to many resources that were only available to the experienced wealthy employees, The social theorists would, therefore, support the conflict as a profit-making system, leading to industrialization (Macionis, 2007). The interactionists would look at the problem from a perspective of the bigger picture of the society, suggesting how social problems are affected at the institutional level The interactionists would be more concerned with the social psychological dynamics of individuals interacting in small groups, as opposed to the functionalist and the conflict perspective that majors on how broad aspects the society influence the social world.

The theorists of symbolic perspective would also suggest that that our identity is shaped by our interaction; hence I believe they would be against the bullying problem I experienced at the workplace, My interaction as an intern with the co»workers did not bring out a pleasant image of the co-workers identityr According to the theorists, human beings develop their self-concept by observing how others interact with their colleagues.

Symbolic interactionts have the perspective that by observing how other people view us, we can also see a true image of ourselves. In relation to the problem I underwent, the interactionist perspective has it that the colleagues viewed me as a junior member of the society who does not deserve to be given a chance to have the same experience with the experienced employees In conclusion, the three theoretical approaches to sociology are significant in understanding the social problems that we experience in our daily lives. We learn what is required of us as per the arguments and perspectives of the social theoristsi Again, we get to informed about the importance the problems we come across in developing a competitive society.


  1. Macionis, J. (2007). Sociology.
  2. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson/Prentice Hall.
  3. Mooney, Knox, and Schacht (2007).
  4. Understanding Social Problems: The Three Main Sociological Perspectives. (5th ed, pp. 1-2).


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An Overview of Different Sociological Approaches. (2022, Jun 20). Retrieved from

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