Concepts and beliefs are themselves, in a sense, institutions amongst others; for they provide a kind of fa irly permanent frame, as do other institutions, independent of anyone individual. within which individual conduct takes place. In another sense, they are correlates of all the institutions of a society: and to understand the working of the concepts of a society is to understand its institutions. 1 Hence, a discussion of the application of Functionalism to interpretation (of concepts and beliefs), rather than Functionalism as such, is not really much of a restriction of the subject-matter.