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Sociologists believe that there is four different ways of social conflict. Most sociologists will use the theoretical or perspective approach to help research. There are a multitude of approaches that are used by sociologist but, the mainly stick to three types of theories. The first would be the structural - functional theory, then the social conflict theory, and finally the symbolic interaction theory. Within these three approaches are several more ways to gain research (Conflict Theories, 2011).

The social conflict theory tries to show that society creates conflict due to the inequalities that are present in everyday life. Most sociologists will use the macro level orientation theory simply because it takes society as a whole and shows how it shapes our lives. It uses terms like inequality, power, authority, competition, and exploitation (Conflict Theories, 2011).

Some of the examples that would be used in the social conflict theory are authority. Authority takes into account the family, patriarchy, race and ethnicity hierarchies of authority. In inequality there is family, health, and property. Inequality looks at how people are treated and how are perceived by others. Then there is competition which; can be anything from education, religion, to who will move over when you pass someone on the street. Competition is ingrain