Social Stratification Essay

4192 Words Mar 10th, 2015 17 Pages
SOCIAL STRATIFICATION: INTRODUCTION AND SIGNIFICANCE Social strata are levels of social statuses. Members of a society who possess similar amount of wealth, power, and privileges occupy each social stratum. We can see layers of social statuses occupied by members of society. Organized systems of such strata are conceptualized as social stratification system. Social stratification refers to a system by which a society ranks categories of people in a hierarchy. Four basic principles of stratification: 1. Social stratification is characteristic of society, not simply a reflection of individual differences. Children born into wealth families are more likely than born into poverty to enjoy good health, achieve academically, succeed in their …show more content…
There is a rigid social hierarchy. Social stratification is based on ascription and there is little social mobility. Such a system is supported by its culture. (Traditional Indian caste system).

Open social system: A social system based largely on individual achievement; therefore it permits considerable social mobility. Here strata are called as social classes. Social class is a stratum of people of similar social standing. They have their own way of life. Social mobility is an act of moving from one social class to another. The amount of movement up and down the class structure would indicate the extent of social mobility prevalent in the society. The social mobility is greatly influenced by the level of openness of the society.
Open society is the one where people attain their status primarily by their own efforts. In

fact the extent of mobility may be taken as an index of openness of a society indicating how far talented individuals born into lower strata can move up the socioeconomic ladder. In this respect, social mobility is an important political issue, particularly in countries committed to liberal vision of equality of opportunity to all citizens. In this perspective industrial societies are mostly open societies portraying high social mobility. Compared with them, pre-industrial societies have mostly been found to be closed societies where there has been low social mobility. People in such societies

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