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Debriefing and Analysis of Social Problems Essay

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Updated: Nov 19th, 2021

Section I

Institutional power refers to all those social, cultural or environmental milieu under the influence of which we are liable to perform our day to day activities. For example, Hughes and Ferguson (2004, p. 8) points out examples including upbringing of children in a particular culture, work place management in a large organization, exercise of judicial power in court, and so on. Contemporary trends in institutional power leads us to anonymous directions where institutional power is experienced without even knowing who owns the authority to rule such power. Such power may be witnessed by considering an example of a closed-circuit camera.

Closed-circuit camera is less directed towards us and more directed towards our acts. It indirectly captures our deeds and performances and is more than being impersonal mode of receiving our actions even in a public place (Hughes and Ferguson 2004, pp. 8-9). It is an indirect example of how our behavior is being monitored irrespective of our contention and how it scrutinizes our attitude.

Provocation is the freedom to govern our lives in accordance with our likes and dislikes. Foucault has referred this provocation to a paradox with which we unconsciously rule our lives but in a particular contradiction. We are not governed by any structure of power, in fact we are only subjected to have multiple choices that rule our lives. Such choices indirectly lead us to be influenced by situations and directions.

Provocative power acts as a source to lead people’s lives but in an unconscious manner. People have no options other than to choose from among multiple choices and it is their selection of a particular choice whose consequences or aftermaths they experience. We are never free-floating bodies, but are bounded by the actions we take and the consequences we suffer. That means we are never free, but are bound to make choices to experience and celebrate our victories or failures.

Political ideologies are those individual understandings about our social structures and institutions that when combined together in our ideologies take the form of powerful perceptions about institutions (Hughes and Ferguson 2004, p. 59). It is our vision of power that makes our institutions powerful, otherwise no political ideology possess its own identity. It is us who shapes them, transforms into powerful institutions and associate social values to them.

Power is what we acknowledge and political ideologies is the acknowledgement of our power. Political ideologies concern about travailing power, power that when appears on a conscious level bounds us to act in a social milieu. This power when reacts within our inner subconscious, acts like a closed circuit camera that monitors and records our each and every action. Similarly political ideologies govern our conscious power to be influenced by social values and judgments. While taking an example of ‘conservative’ political ideology, it is clear that the way we respect and acknowledge this conservatism provides capability to our conscious to grasp this conservatism to influence us to the extent that it seems that conservativeness rules us.

Section II

New divisions in the domestic living family arrangements are no doubt a result of the diversified values, values that have changed over the period of time. This is evident from the fact that the way domestic families used to survive once under a single roof is getting vague. Except for the Arab families traditions have changed. Arabs despite having a large number of family members, manage to live under one shelter.

Arab families are immensely bounded by each other through strong social ties, and this is evident from the fact that Arab male members unlike other cultures, are more dominant in nature. Arab families are portrayed by one male dominant man under the authority of which are other female members, who are only meant to raise their children. This unit which Arab comprises of what we call as family are comfortable in living under one roof while at the same time managing their personal and interpersonal relationships.

As a point of comparison, Arab societies are inverse of the Western societies in many ways. In UK, it is hard to support a family, despite the fact that both husband and wife works in order to raise their children until they are adults, whereas in Arab societies men keep the entire family in which women are not supposed to work. Arab women do not have to work in order to keep their living standard high. Since it is the sole responsibility of the men to provide their women with every thing, there are no rivalries among the relationships. All are comfortable as soon as they are provided with necessities or even luxuries of life. This also indicates another dimension of their economical strength. Inequalities in Arab family exists as long as divisions between men and women are witnessed inside and outside their home.

Initial Marxist and liberalist groups criticise social democracy as ‘political’ ideology so as to introduce socialism and democracy in undemocratic countries. They perceived while being the majority of socialists at that time, that there is a need to change the system.

Though they did not reject Marxism but wanted to reform it in ways that molds capitalism. They hold the opinion that socialism must be acquired through development of a welfare state and not through an overnight revolution. If we discuss the Marxist critics in context with Arab families, we see that there are continuous risks and uncertainties of envies and rivalries because of profound differences in family’s abilities according to their wealth, status and individual freedom and since Arab families survive under one roof, the risk of such threats increases (Hughes & Fergusson 2004, p. 61).

Democracy can never be introduced under capitalist economies, and since Arab countries lack democracy, it would be wrong to say that the region is not divided into classes. Social idealism unlike economic oppression is the ultimate source of all subjugation, the imminent elimination of the former eliminates the need for an extended analysis of the latter. And to those who view economic liberation as liberation, traditional questions about the social class like Arabs concerns about the specifically political expression of human freedom as more or less irrelevant.

Critics claim that Marxists when speculating on the perfect social order, conflicts with the rhetoric about the people controlling their own destiny or the self-government of the producers. Therefore, in order to set out what Marxists would put in place of so called social democracy, we are necessarily obliged to impose system and order on criticising remarks not on the basis of revolution but evolution.

Critics suggest that Marxism and liberalism have failed to produce a coherent and convincing theory of democracy, because it is not been enforced for the reason that Marx made it clear by himself that it can be hoped for some societies of participatory democracy. If politicians and bureaucrats are to convince upon this notion, it would only serve as a hope to settle his preference for a centrally regulated economy.

Later Marxist groups while acknowledging the impossibility of reconciling the inconvincable theory, chose to rediscover the liberal political system from a new dimension, whose structure appeared compatible with the realities of socialist production. What we assess from Marxist social thoughts is that societies can learn self-control and authority even if the function of every social institution remains irrational, so the best approach is to avoid significant change until the effects are completely understood.


Hughes Gordon & Fergusson Ross., 2004. Ordering lives: family, work and welfare. 2nd ed, Routledge: Open University Press.

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