Hierarchical - Sociological Imagination - Lecture Slides, Slides for Sociology. Ambedkar University, Delhi

Sociology

Description: Hierarchical, Social Stratification, Property, Closed Stratification Systems, Slavery and Castes, Social Position, Slavery, Chattel Slavery, Domestic Slavery, Discussion are some points from this lecture.
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CHAPTER 4:

CHAPTER 8:

SOCIAL STRATIFICATION

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WHAT IS SOCIAL STRATIFICATION?

• A hierarchical ranking of people who have different access to valued resources

• Property, prestige, power, and status

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Closed Stratification Systems

• Movement from one social position to another is limited due to ascribed statuses.

• Slavery and castes are closed systems.

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• In slavery, some people own others and have control over their lives – In chattel slavery people are bought and

sold as commodities. – In domestic slavery employers force

people to work for long hours and little if any pay.

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Slavery

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Discussion How is it possible for employers to enslave

workers, even in the United States?

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• In caste systems, social categories are based on heredity.

• India is the classic example. • Indian castes

Brahmins—priests and scholars – Kshatriyas—kings and warriors – Vaishyas—merchants and farmers – Shudras—peasants and laborers

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Caste Systems

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Dalits—untouchables – Outside the caste system – Poor – Performed the most menial tasks – Were considered "polluting"

• Caste system was outlawed in 1949. • Social distinctions persist.

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Caste Systems

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Open Stratification Systems

• Social classes are relatively fluid. • Based on achieved statuses. • A social class is a category of people

who have a similar rank based on wealth, education, power, or prestige.

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Discussion To what extent is mobility possible in the

United States?

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DIMENSIONS OF STRATIFICATION

Wealth—money and economic assets – Includes property and income

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– Wealth is cumulative, passed on to the next generation, and produces income. – Income inequality is increasing in the

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Prestige—respect, recognition, or regard – Based on wealth, family background, fame,

occupation, and leadership – Prestigious occupations require education,

pay more, involve mental activity, and offer autonomy

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Prestige

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Power—the ability of individuals to achieve goals, control events, and maintain influence over others despite opposition – Power elite—a small group of white men

who make the important decisions in U.S. society

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Power

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Application • What happens when statuses are

inconsistent? • What are some examples of status

inconsistency? • What problems are associated with status

inconsistency?

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SOCIAL CLASS IN AMERICA

Socioeconomic status (SES)—an overall rank of people's positions based on their income, education, and occupation

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Upper Classes

Upper-upper class—enormous wealth, inherited fortunes, considerable economic and political power

Lower-upper classnouveau riche, engage in conspicuous consumption

Upper-middle class—live on earned income, professional and managerial occupations

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Middle Classes

Lower-middle class—non- manual, semiprofessional occupations, rely on two incomes, maintain comfortable lifestyle

Working class—skilled and semiskilled laborers, possess high school education

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Lower Classes

Working poor—work at least 27 weeks a year but live in poverty

Underclass—persistently poor, segregated residentially, relatively isolated, chronically unemployed, lack skills and education

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Application Identify the class of each example:

– Maria is a dental technician working in a large clinic.

– Kevin dropped out of high school, works in agriculture only in the summer, has trouble making ends meet.

– William inherited family wealth, attended private schools, and became a politician.

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POVERTY IN AMERICA

• Poverty is increasing. • 37 million people live in poverty in the U.S.

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Absolute poverty—not having enough money to afford the most basic necessities

Relative poverty—not having enough money to maintain an average standard of living

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Types of Poverty

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Poverty line—the minimal level of income that the federal government considers necessary for basic subsistence

• In 2006, the poverty line was $20,444 for a family of four.

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Poverty Line

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Who are the poor?

• Children • Women • African Americans, American Indians, and

Latinos

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Why are people poor?

Culture of poverty view—The poor share values, beliefs, and attitudes that are different from the non-poor.

Functional view—Society creates and sustains poverty.

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SOCIAL MOBILITY

Social mobility—movement in the stratification hierarchy – Horizontal mobility—moving from one

position to another at the same level – Vertical mobility—moving up or down the

stratification ladder

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Application Identify the type of mobility for each

example: – Cameron graduated from college, left welfare,

and secured a semiprofessional position. – Tom left his job in the factory to work in

maintenance at the college. – Cecelia grew up with a mother who worked

cleaning motels, but Cecelia is a doctor.

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What affects mobility? • Structural factors: changes in the

economy, the number of available positions, immigration

Demographic factors: education, gender, race and ethnicity

Individual factors: family background, socialization, connections and change

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WHY ARE THERE HAVES AND HAVE-NOTS?

• The Functionalist Perspective – Stratification benefits society. – The Davis-Moore Thesis—Stratification

ensures that important jobs are filled with the most qualified people.

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• The Conflict Perspective—Stratification hurts society. – Capitalism pits the bourgeoisie and

proletariat against each other. – Corporate welfare subsidizes business

rather than workers.

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Conflict Theory

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• The Feminist Perspective—Women are almost always at the bottom. – Patriarchy benefits most men. – Men control a disproportionate share of

wealth, prestige, and power.

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Feminist Theories

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• The Symbolic Interactionist Perspective—People create and share stratification. – People socialize their children to acquire and

use symbols.

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Symbolic Interactionist

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INEQUALITY ACROSS SOCIETIES

High-income countries have a developed industrial economy and an annual gross national income of almost $37,066 per person.

Middle-income countries have a developing industrial economy and a lower GNI per capita.

Low-income countries are the least industrialized and largely agricultural. 7

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Why is inequality universal? • Modernization theory suggests that

low-income countries lack modern, progressive cultures.

Dependency theory contends that low- income countries are exploited and dominated by high-income countries.

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Application • Identify the theory:

– Inequality ensures that important jobs are filled by the most talented.

– High-income countries set prices for raw materials and labor.

– Parents teach children the habits and attitudes of their social class.

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