Social Movement and Functionalism

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Civil Rights Movement The civil rights movement of the 1956 initiated by Rosa Park, a middle age black woman, who had worked all day cleaning white people homes for a living. On a particular evening Rosa had worked all day and walked to the bus stop to catch the bus. Upon getting on the bus and sitting down and resting her tired feet, the white bus drive asked Rosa to get up and go to the back of the bus and let a white man sit down. Rosa had followed all of the Jim Crow laws that perceived blacks as second class citizens; but this day she decided to refuse since she was so tired physically and emotional to being treated different, that she refused to move. This refusal was against the law and a policeman came to arrest her (Pearson Education Inc. 2007). This incident sparked the community to employ a young civil right leader Dr. Martin Luther King to lead this movement. Although King was only one individual he begins this struggle for justice for all Americans and began to fight for the change values and morals of the South. Dr. King practice non-violence and civil disobedience as a way to change the social structure of equality. Functionalists focused on the individual and how one’s behavior is shaped or moved by social norms and values of the dominant society’s values and norms. These values and norms were the predominant views of the white Southern that practice the implementation and enforcement of Jim Crow laws. These laws were prevalent in the South and part of the legal system of justice within our court system (Pearson Education Inc. 2007). Functionalism Functionalism analyses focus on the individual, and how decisions are derived and how one’s behavior is shaped or move by social norms and values. For example; in the 1950’s it was the predominant norm for blacks to be considered as second class citizens as mention above.
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