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Floya Anthias model analyses and contradicts the traditional view of social stratification.
Anthias conceptualised the model of ‘’intersectionality”. This model analyses social stratification, in which class, race, gender, sexual orientation, don’t exist separately from each other but are interlaced.
This highlights the importance and effect of interactions of individuals’ membership to categories, and their result on social differences. This interaction defines a structure able to outline individuals’ social position and the level of their access to resources.
The social discrimination is no longer a simple addiction of different forms of inequality, but a complexity that must be examined in his totality.
Thanks to this analytic framework the position of individuum in the society is analysed as a result of a social process. Divisions are a result of intersections with the others, “in this way classes are always gendered and racialised and gender is always classed and racialised and so on. [..] the question of intersections raises fundamental problems relating to the concrete and analytical relations between social divisions " (Anthias 2005, S. 33).
This method brings to light the process that creates social inequality, giving more importance to each one’s condition. This highlights also that, as the position in society contains many combinations, it can represent a vehicle for an improvement of the perception of inequality on a legal and cultural field.
Anyway, the different categories’ interactions (sex, ethnicity, nation, class etc.) don’t have the same effect on social inequality for everyone. This variety of aspects and circumstances that the model must consider implements the difficulty the one can find trying to find concrete interrelations. Moreover, the framing that this model allows, can also have a negative consequence and be a disadvantage: trying to locate groups and individuals on fix social categories doesn’t match with the principle of individuality and social complexity, a central focus for social science.
Literature: Floya Anthias (2005): Social Stratification and Social Inequality: Models of Intersectionality and Identity, in: Fiona Devine et al. (eds.): Rethinking Class. Culture, Identities and Lifestyles, p. 24-45.