Societal Factors Influencing Dispute Processing Preferences - Essay Sample

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  5
Wordcount:  1364 Words
Date:  2023-05-15

List and describe the significant societal factors affecting preferences for one or more of the methods of dispute processing in particular societies

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Addressing disputes at the societal level is never an open game that requires similar methods of dispute solving from one community to another. The choice of preferences is, however, influenced by different societal factors, which are eventually explained in this discussion. The first factor is the nature and structure of social relationships. The majority of traditional societies are connected to another in various aspects. a typical example is that in such a community, most of the members usually are relatives, and often tend to meet one another almost daily. "This emphasis of enduring relationships, in turn, promotes compromise outcomes and this negotiations and mediations are favorable" (Barkan, 2015 p. 105). As a result, individuals frequently have a better understanding of other people; this negotiation and mediation may be preferred as the most effective dispute solving method is such a multiplex kind of relationship. In contrast, in liberal societies like that of the USA, where people's involvement is simplex in a manner that most do not know their neighbors and others around them, hence arbitration and adjudication methods.

The second factor is power and inequality. Studies have it that in small societies, power distribution is usually even because the majority come from the same socioeconomic status. Again, negotiations and mediation techniques may seem relevant since there is respect amongst the individuals in the society. However, in liberal societies, power and income distribution are generally uneven. While some are very wealthy, others are inferior (Barkan, 2015 p. 106). The gap between the rich and the poor is thus usually more significant in large societies. As a result, adjudication may be the best dispute solving tool, as the presence of courts may try to level up people, regardless of their income, positions, and class.

Pick either Emile Durkheim or Max Weber. Explain their perspective on social evolution and how social affected changes in the law

Emile Durkheim did extensive research in determining how social dependencies in small and large societies influenced the process of manipulating rules to best suit the environment and people involved in society. In the book The Division of Labor in Society, he stressed that the concept of interdependencies varied from the traditional communities to modern settings (Barkan, 2015 p. 171). In support, he noted that people from traditional communities were very similar in terms of ideologies, beliefs, and customs and referred to them as homogenous. For this reason, the social order in such communities was easy to define based on the similarities and homogeneity. Here, the order is mechanical solidarity. On the other hand, in liberal corporations, people have different social classes, and values, ideas, and beliefs also vary heavily. Durkheim thus called such a community heterogeneous, because one is never interested in the activities and undertakings of another. It is, therefore, uneasy to define a definite social order for large societies. The order is hence organic solidarity.

The scholar pointed out that these common variations influenced the process of changing laws. In traditional societies, members would comply with collective conscience whenever disagreements arise. Because the response to deviances is normally punitive and people only react emotionally on issues that they dislike, repressive law works best for them. On the contrary opinion, collective conscience is quite ineffective for large societies due to the existence of organic solidarity, where one is only interested in correcting the mess and not re-establishing a good relationship. The response to deviant in liberal societies may be ordinarily less punitive; hence it may take the direction of restitution to effectively correct the mess (Barkan, 2015 p. 171). As a result, Durkheim suggested that repressive law is best for modern societies.

Provide an overview of how the law has created and still creates inequality by social class in the U.S.

In the united states of America, the existence of laws has been stated by various scholars and researchers as the primary trigger of inequality in the countries. Social class is typically an example of the aspects which have received massive support from the laws, a fact that is continuing to foster social inequality. Although the USA is a nation where the majority transitioned from poverty to economic comfort in the past, colonialism overturned this fact, as the USA currently experiences several cases of inequality motivated by the differences in social classes in terms of wealth, power, and prestige.

"Social stratification," as sociologists called it, brought about by two significant distinctions, namely, the working class and the upper class, which owns a higher relative volume of wealth in the categories of political, social, and economic (Barkan, 2015 p. 209). First, the laws favored those in power to jail workers whenever they tried to riot over dissatisfaction with their employers. The implementation of the labor injunction laws motivated those in power to gain more wealth without resistance, hence making them more potent while leaving the workers with less power

Another fact that made the USA more powerful is the anti-Chinese sentiments that were created to bar Chinese from working in California during the 1849 Gold Rush. Later in 1882, the American's established a law called the Chinese exclusion act that banned the Chinese from traveling into the U.S. territories. Such a law widened the gap between them and Chinese, as most of America's gained wealth as the other category became poor (Barkan, 2015 p. 210). Typically, the existence of these laws in the USA led to massive inequality and social class stratification.

Explain how drug/alcohol laws have used to discriminate against various racial/ethnic groups throughout the history of the United States.

The laws about drugs in the USA have also played a critical role in triggering the extent of racial and ethnic disparities. The fundamental conviction that is afflicted on the pointe of drug laws and inequality is when the USA decided to ban opium, cocaine, and marijuana usage. History has it that, during the 20th century, opium was widely used by USA residents (McCabe et al., 2010). However, the federal government articulated that the fact was motivated by the existence of Chinese people in the U.S., who used to entice white ladies and boys to use the drugs, before they molested them, and left them opium addicts (Barkan, 2015 p. 212). The Chinese exclusion act of 1882 was thus formed to make Chinese people flee to their nation to reduce the rate of drug usage in the USA, and instead, make people use their funds to develop and attain economic comforts.

Analysis of the act points out that if America wanted good for their nation, then the best remedy would be to illegalize the drug by making up laws that prohibit its usage. In contrast, the decision to formulate the anti-Chinese acts was only targeting the exit of the Chinese to lower their possible growth, as that of American's was elevated due to an increased number of job opportunities, and resources to disseminate amongst the citizens. Moreover, the Mexican Americans were singled out to the group who were using marijuana in the USA. While this was not the case because most whites were equally smoking marijuana just like other people, the authorities thus suggested that leaving Mexicans in America would lead to an increase in the rate of crime rates (Barkan, 2015 p. 212). As a result, they were also eliminated from the nation, while leaving the drug was left legal for consumption. The two drug laws enacted in the USA promoted racial and ethnic inequalities because the Chinese and Mexican's power was suppressed by elevating the power of the whites.


Barkan, S. E. (2015). Law and Society: An introduction. Routledge. Retrieved from,+S.+E.+(2015).+Law+and+Society:+An+introduction.+Routledge.&ots=Dgcu4W0S5y&sig=qPe37VKNkZTjs6diG7SbhL9ZXaY

McCabe, S. E., Bostwick, W. B., Hughes, T. L., West, B. T., & Boyd, C. J. (2010). The relationship between discrimination and substance use disorders among lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults in the United States. American journal of public health, 100(10), 1946-1952. Retrieved from

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