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Reprinted by permission of the publisher. VISIONS OF SOCIETY: The Bureaucratization of Society. The McDonaldization of Society. GEORGE RITZER. to McDonaldization. George Ritzer. McDonald's is the basis of one of the most influential developments in contemporary society. Its reverberations extend far. First published: Spring ppti.info .x. Cited by: About. Figures; Related; Information. ePDF PDF. PDF · ePDF.

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The Bureaucratization of Society. VTK TB Ss The McDonaldization of Society. GEORGE RITZER. Internet, or a host of other “modern conveniences". The McDonaldization of Society is the fifth edition of George Ritzer's provocative efficiency and calculability as the core elements of these McDonaldization. dominate more and more sectors of American society as well as of the rest of the world McDonaldization has shown every sign of being an inexorable process.

Such method of standardization is widely used in other industries that become more predictable as well. The tourist sphere is also affected by this method.

For instance, when people purchase the packaged tour from the travel agency they know that other travelers will be similar to them. The transportation system including planes, buses as well as accomodations and restaraunts do not differ significantly from one place to another one.

Due to that fact that it is possible to predict some circumstances, people are more eager to choose the package tours rather than to travel on the individual basis.

The third dimension of McDonaldization involves the control. According to Ritzer, McDonald's restaurants introduced specialized tasks for all employees in order to ensure that work performed on the same level Massey , p. Indeed, it allows to keep the complicated process to run smoothly.

For example, the activity of employees is controled with help of the non-human technology. Moreover, the food in the famous chain of restaraunts is prepared in advance and only needs to be processed, fried and heated. Therefore, it is the form of control of the activities of employees and of the whole process of food preparation which allows to ensure that all standards are met.

Apart from the control of the employees the control over the customers is also exerted Ritzer , p. It is done in a way when clients are offered limited amount of choice and unconvenient seats, which forces the customers leave after having a meal.

At the same time, such approach allows to minimize the time spent in the restaraunt and to attract more clients. The technological development also play a vital role in the process of McDonaldization.

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For instance, the automatic machines for self-order aims to avoid the queues and minimizes the interaction between customers and staff. Moreover, the non-human technology controls that consumers would be able to receive the exact product every time an order is placed.

From this point, Ritzer also provided an agrument regarding the US airlines. He asserted that, on the contrary to the opinion of others who stated that pilots play important role in the airplane control, the jobs of pilots has been McDonaldized, because the computer leads the plane between take off and landing and it guides the pilots during the flight Yeganeh , p.

Indeed, the parallel between workers in fast-food restaraunt, who heat and pack the prepared food with help of technology, and pilots, who are guided by the navigation services and board computer, which permorms the majority of the pilot's work. The control aspect in the process of McDonaldization has found its application in other businesses, in phone operating systems, in Sylvan Learning Center and even birth and death.

The “McDonaldization” of Society

Each step of the learning process in such centers, the U-shaped tables and instruction material, is controlled and each step of the birthing and dying process in contemporary hospitals is monitored as well Ritzer This term is used by Ritzer in order to understand how the American McDonaldinazed society gives preference to the quantity rather than to quality.

The responsibilities between the workers in McDonalds are equally divided in order to produce mass quantities of food in efficient way. An each employee performs insignificant amount of tasks and it leads to the feelings of workers that there is no point in being pride for what they do and therefore, the reduction of service quality takes place Yeganeh Thus, George Ritzer claimed that quantity should prevail over quality in the McDonaldized society Ritzer , p.

Indeed, taking into account the example of the educational system in the majority of states one might note that the process of education also enherited some features of fast- food chains. In contemporary schools and universities the emphasis is put on the grade students receive rather than on the knowledge obtained. In other words, students aim to receive higher grades, but not to possess better knowledge and the issue is that marks do not always reflect the actual knowledge of students due to certain circumstances.

Ritzer in his book also argued that whole educational process became quantified, because students are evaluated on the basis of GPA and compared to others based on this criteria Ritzer ,p. Hence, from this perspective, the system of education is also affected by the process of McDonaldization. Besides the dimensions of the McDonaldization Ritzer also discussed the historical cases that are connected with the rationalization and McDonaldization.

One of those events refer to the Holocaust.


Undoubdetly, the Holocaust possessed the basic characteristics of the rationalization and McDonaldization. Firstly, an effective mechanism, which included massive shooting, gas chambers and coersion to work in the camps, was used in order to execute people. Secondly, the aim was to exterminate as much people as possible, therefore, the emphasis was put on quantity-the feature which is inherent to the McDonaldization.

The predictability was also crucial aspect, because it was not difficult to predict the further massive murders and the control along with subordination to the non- human technology took place as well Engle , p. Summing it up, George Ritzer has based his ideas of the McDonaldization on the key elements of Marx Weber work, who discussed the rationalization of society.

The famous sociologist in his book discussed those features of the McDonaldization, which included the efficiency, predictability, control and calculability and how those dimensions found the application in other industries. Ritzer provided a number of relevant examples in the book, which demonstrated the positive and negative aspects of the process of rationalization and McDonaldization.

Ritzer also demonstrated that the historical event also possessed some rational features and characteristic of McDonaldization.

Afterwards, G. Ritzer came to the conclusion that the contemporary American society and industries are influenced by the features of the famous fast-food chains and that progressive rationalization apart from advantages caused the number of difficulties, and that the process of the rationalization needs to be futher controlled.

The McDonaldization of Society (9th ed.)

Bauman, Z. Engle, J. Ritzer, G. The McDonaldization of Society. Thousand Oaks: Junk food news , defined here as inoffensive and trivial news served up in palatable portions, is an example of McDonaldization. Another example could be McUniversities, which features modularized curricula, delivering degrees in a fast-track pick-and-mix fashion to satisfy all tastes.

The diminished quality of these products can only be disguised by extensive advertising which constantly repackages them to look new. In penology, there has been a shift from punishments and treatment tailored to individual offenders, to attempting to control classes of offenders who are considered to be at high risk of recidivism through standardized penalties, such as those specified by three-strikes laws or sentencing guidelines.

Offenders are classified by security level and sent to facilities deemed capable of adequately incapacitating prisoners in their risk category.

The McDonaldization of society.

Technology such as electronic surveillance , electronic monitoring , urinalysis , and computer-based offender tracking systems are often used in place of humans in the penal system. The response from McDonald's , expressed by its representatives in the United Kingdom , is that Ritzer, like other commentators, uses the company's size and brand recognition to promote ideas that do not necessarily relate to the company's business practices.

It has been argued by a westerner that an example of the phenomenon of McDonaldization can be seen in education, where there is seen to be increasing similarity between that of Western classrooms and the rest of the world.

Slater [10] argues that the class size, layout and pedagogy in Peru closely resemble that of America, with clear examples of Western culture focused on efficiency of transfer of knowledge in other parts of the world. Furthermore, Slater [10] goes on to demonstrate that the McDonaldization of education could have many negative side effects; particularly that it does not promote inquiry or creativity.

Therefore, schools will become less effective at educating children as they will fail to develop critical and creative thinkers. A study by Carroll on " E-learning — the McDonaldization of education " describes how e-learning has become one of the biggest phenomena of educational literature in recent years. Although the potential promise of e-learning is often expected within the process of learning, much of the emphasis is in fact on the electronic issues to facilitate learning, with little regard for its consequences on the learning process.

Consequently, this often erodes the human factor in learning — making the learning process a more isolated experience. This article suggests that academics should become more cautious with their acceptance of facilitating learning through e-learning platforms without fully understanding the impact on students learning experiences. The McDonaldization of Education is not only limited to physical classroom settings.

While it is possible to create a new original MOOC every semester, it is more likely a basic structure will be created and subsequently altered each time in order to make their creation more efficient.

Computer graded exams will be used more frequently than written essay exams to make it more efficient for the instructors. Yet since MOOCs limit the amount of contact between student and teacher, it will be difficult to engage the course on a deeper and more meaningful level. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Find sources: Sociology portal Companies portal Business and economics portal. Globalization and Culture: Global Melange. The McDonaldization of Society. Los Angeles: Pine Forge Press. Make up your own mind. Retrieved E-learning—the McDonaldization of education.

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Skinner Donald N.Ruslan Vlasenko Book review: George Ritzer The McDonaldization Thesis Explorations and Extensions By: Ruslan Vlasenko George Ritzer is one of the American sociologists, who conducted studies in the fields of globalization, contemporary and postmodern social theory and metatheory, and is the author of the series of books refered to the sociological books. As it is known, Marx Weber believed that the contemporary world was becoming more rational, predictable and calculable and bureaucracy was the form of rationalization Henderson He further states that beyond dehumanization further irrationalities emerge; including the inefficient masses of red tape, over quantification leading to low quality work, unpredictability as employees grow unclear about what they are supposed to do, or the loss of control due to other things.

The diminished quality of these products can only be disguised by extensive advertising which constantly repackages them to look new. Although the potential promise of e-learning is often expected within the process of learning, much of the emphasis is in fact on the electronic issues to facilitate learning, with little regard for its consequences on the learning process.

The Technological Society: Social Theory, McDonaldization and the Prosumer

Ruslan Vlasenko. Provided by: Boundless Learning. This is such a good opportunity to bring more theory into awarenessfor students.

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