Student Loan debt

Ron Liber’s article “Placing the Blame as Students Are Buried in Debt” brings to light the huge strain that is imposed on families for the sole purpose of education. In most cases families may make financial decisions based on emotion rather than reason. To emphasize his argument he points out a horrific family story of Munna. She and her mother took huge loans to cater for Munna’s education in NYU. The author blames the university and the lenders for not counseling the family on the facts that could assist in saving them from the current debt situation. The story can be viewed and analyzed from different perspectives, from a functionalist, conflict theorist and symbolic interactionism point of view.
A functionalist will analyze the story from the social perspective that shows that Munna was in financial crisis due to love and care from her mother, the university and the lender. He will argue that the mother had all the reasons to strive and educate her daughter at whatever cost. The university and the lender on the other hand should also take a social approach, they should not discourage her from getting funds but encourage her to work extra hand to meet future financial liabilities.
A conflict theorist will concentrate on the group that Munna is supposedly representing. Too much emphasizes will be put on the class that the victim is expected to represent; middle class citizens, single parent children and females. The university and the lender avoided counseling the student for fear of being accused of victimization and discrimination.
Symbolic interactionism will analyze the article from the fact that Munna’s future financial expectations are limited just because she is a middle class student and there for it was impossible for her to gain access to huge financial stability. For that reason they felt that she could not accept the university or lender’s advice. The two groups also felt they could not discourage her from making independent decisions or assuming her future financial state could not much her expected debt level.

Lieber, Ron. (2010) “Placing the Blame as Students Are Buried in Debt”. The New York Times.


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