Thesis: Difference between Essentialism and Social Construction

Sample Thesis Paper

The difference between the two is that essentialism depends on a pre determined set of concepts which allow a direct perception of reality to be formed. While Social Construction rejects any form of direct perception and questions everything. It allows a person to create his own reality by use of language and social interaction while essentialism creates a perception which is universal to all individuals.

When we speak of deviance, we are considering actions which maybe outside the norms of society. Aspects of deviance may be considered anything from promiscuity, adultery to criminal behaviour. Under the Social Construction principle however such definitions of deviance would be excluded. Instead it would be based upon the ideas of how a community perceives deviant behaviour. Such ideas would be contingent in determining the values of a people within society and in turn provide concepts of behaviour to allow control over them. However, by extension this principle also allows individuals to perceive what they wish regarding people’s behaviour. Certain behaviours may not be considered to be immoral by certain individuals, but may be considered as such due to a consensus among the community. Thus, in this principle it becomes a question of not moral and immoral acts rather what the community objects to as such.

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