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May 1, 2018 / C H Thompson

Functionalism and religion

  • Malinowski suggested religion helps people in times of emotional stress,
  • and he placed an emphasis on the psychological functions that religion provides for the individual

For example he argued that there are two types of events where religion provides support:

  • In times where the outcome is important but uncertain
  • In times of life crisis, such as marriage, death and puberty

In these situations, religion helps people cope. Again, religion is seen as bringing social stability rather than change


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