Structuralism and Post – Structuralism : C. Levi Strauss and M. Foucault 

Spread the love

Structuralism and Post – Structuralism :

C. Levi Strauss and M. Foucault 


Structuralism is a method of thinking or method of analysis used in the social sciences and humanities of the twentieth century. Those communities, which extend to the cultural use of human languages, folklore, and literary use, structuralism studies and analyzes them in a systematic way, their relationships and functions of the smallest fragments. Structuralism is an intellectual movement that has its roots in French sociology What is structuralism? are implied. Durkheim, Marx and Claude Structuralism Levi Strauss of social phenomena is one such approach of much study on structuralism in which light has been thrown. More importance is given to the definition of social structure than to social action of social structure. Structuralism through social relations has basically drawn on this idea. But the structuralists of Europe are based that the sociological structure of social reality is social. Often behind the fluctuating and changing face lie some hidden structures of interaction and social relations. Do not accept the definition made on the basis of They believe that what a person says and the way he thinks influences his behavior.

Therefore, language and thought are the definitions of social structure. Staveless and Alison Bulf have defined structuralism in a different way, according to them, “Social structure as we experience in the context of the world is the same social structure, that is, the experience of our daily life is the essence of social structure.” Sociologists related to structuralism. It is divided into two parts –




European structuralist and

American – British structuralist.

European structuralist language and structure of thought

Introduction of Structuralism Structuralism is a way of thinking or method of analysis in the modern social sciences and humanities. Structural studies and analyzes such ideas whose extent is the cultural use of human languages ​​and folk tales and literature is experimental. Definition of Structuralism Structuralism is an intellectual movement that has its roots in the sociology of France.


Social interactions have been done through social interactions and social relations but the structuralist sociologists of Europe do not accept the definition of structure on the basis of social interaction and social relations. They believe that what a person says and the way he thinks influences his behavior. Therefore, language and thought are the definitions of social structure.


Sociologists related to structuralism are divided into two parts.


European structuralist and

American – British structuralist.

European structuralists consider language and thought to be the basic basis of structure, while American-British structuralists consider the social relations found between individuals to be the basis of social structure.


The sociologists of this sect lay emphasis on understanding the real behavior of the people to understand the society. They believe that only the conclusions obtained on the basis of empirical study give knowledge of social structure.


Prominent among European structuralists are Levi Strauss and Michael Foucault, while American structuralists include Peter Blau.


Peter Blau’s view is that structuralism is not related to language and ideology, but structure is based on some rules, this rule is based on modern studies. Blau is of the view that social structuralism aims at creating integration in society and lays emphasis on finding groups and rules for integration that apply to all levels of human life, be it tribal life or modern developed life. are found .



Structuralism is comparatively a general ideology of the developed intellectual world in the present time, which is in the process of revision. Traditional structuralism originated in France in which Claude Lévi Strauss has played a major role.


The French structuralists are of the view that the roots of structuralism lie in the language. The name of F. D. Saussure is prominent in structural linguistics and Saussure is considered the father of structuralist theory.


According to Saussure, every language has a major grammar. which is different from the dialect of the language. Language is an abstract system consisting of vowels and words. There are many elements in a vowel whose mutual relationship is determined. The elements of vowel help in understanding the word of the language. Saussure’s philological studies were based not only on language, but on the underlying rules of traditions that govern language, and this is a key feature of the structuralists’ ideology.




Saussure developed structural linguistics. Saussure was in favor of a structure based on languages, which was common to all, so his study was based on deep study. Since it gives importance to deep structure rather than structuralism based facts, it is a part of it parallel to the approach of Marx and Freud. It gives greater importance to both the underlying functions, the unconscious motivations and the transpersonal forces.

Used to give Pays less attention to the consciousnesses and preferences of the individual. That is why, like Marxism and Freudism, structuralism continued to give importance to the modern decline of the individual, its own macro diagram and impersonal theory.


Anthony Giddens


Capitalism and Modern Social Theory ( 1971 )

Politics and Sociology in the Thought of Max Weber (1972)
The Class Structure of the Advanced Societies (1973)
Positivism and Sociology (1974). Studies in Social and Political Theory ( 1977 )
Bey and Left and Right : The Future of Radical Politics ( 1994 )
Emile Durkheim ( 1978 ) . Central Problems in Social Theory – Sociology : Abrief but Critical Introduction ( 1982 )
The Constitution of Society ( 1984 )
The Nation, State and Violence (1985) Aganimaye. The Consequences of Modernity (1990). Modernity and Self Identity ( 1991 )
The Transformation of Intimacy ( 1992 )

– In Defense of Sociology ( 1996 )


The main work of Giddens is the theory of structuralisation. Giddens propounded many new trends under critical sociology. Giddens’s ideas have a critique of critique and a remarkable talent for presenting analytical expressions in a logical manner.


In building the background of the structuralist theory, he has drawn attention to the inconsistency between the British and American philosophers in the theory of karma.


Giddens is of the view that social actions take place in time and space, so Giddens has called his structuralist theory as non-functionalist manifesto.

They are of the view that the escape of human history from human desires and the return of the consequences of that migration as causal effects on human action is the main feature of social life.

In structuralist thought, Giddens has laid more emphasis on time history and contemporary historical developmental divisions than on functionalist thought.




Giddens is of the view that every social worker is very much aware of the conditions of reproduction of the society of which he is a member.


He is of the view that all social workers have knowledge of the social system they create or reproduce.


This is an essential feature of the dual concept of structure. In this context the practical consciousness on which the doer differentiates from the critical consciousness in the construction of social action.


Giddens considers the nature and subject area of ​​the deliberative or logical penetration found in the actors to be very important and called it the conflict of control in the collective.


Assumptions of Gidden’s Structural Theory

The following are the assumptions of Giddens’s structural theory


The structuralist theory holds an important place in the structure of both language and society through separation.

Structuralization tries to keep the temporal dimension at the center of its analysis.

Structuralism represents a more appropriate and satisfactory concept of social wholeness than functionalism.

Giddens believes that in order to understand this point, it will be necessary to differentiate between structure and system, because it is lacking in structuralist and functionalist thinking.

 Structuralism lays emphasis on the principle of social reproduction.

 Structuralism tries to transcend the duality of object and subject. 6. Giddens is of the opinion that self-discussion should be structured from two perspectives. (a) In the context of the members of the society whose conduct should be studied. (b) In the context of social science itself as a human endeavour. 7. Structuralist theory has made a lasting contribution to the analysis of production of cultural goods.




Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.