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94 Cards in this Set

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Macionis definition of Social Stratification

A system by which society ranks categories in a hierarchy
Newman's definition of Social Stratification

Structured inequality

Principles of Social Stratification (Macionis)

1. Trait of society, not individual differences
2. Carries over from generation to generation
3. Universal, but variable (some things are more unequal in certain cultures)
4. Not just inequality but beliefs as well (why people are unequal)

Social Mobility

A change in position within the social hierarchy

Closed VS. Open Stratification System
Closed: No social mobility
-caste systems
Open: Is social mobility
-class systems
Caste System in traditional ____
Predictor in an open stratification system?

Where their parents are

Notices differences between people
(Brown vs Blue eyed kids story)
(apart) Keep races separate
-Mandella overturned
Stratification systems are ____ to change
Stratification systems are _____ supported by ideology that supports it


Caste System

Social Stratification based on ascription, or birth, hereditary, religiously dictated, tends to be fixed
-Merit: loyalty

Indias Caste System

4 Varnas - (castes)
-Everyone has a specific job
-mary within same ranking (endogamous)
-guides life by keeping them with "their own kind"
-powerful cultural beliefs

Class System

Social Stratification based on economic position. both birth and individual achievement


Social stratification based on personal merit
-earned through job, achievement
In pure met. (never existed), based off of ability and effort

Status Consistency

degree of uniformity in a person's social standing across various dimensions of social inequality
-HIGH in caste systems
-If LOW, hard to tell status


required all land to pass through the oldest male son

Structural Social Mobility
A shift in the social position of a large group due to changes in society

Cultural beliefs that justify particular social arrangements, including patterns of inequality
-Plato: parts of inequality are fair
-Historical: changes with societies economy and tech.

Davis-Moore Thesis

Social Stratification has beneficial consequences for the operation of society
-do things that no one else want to do
-Draw talented people away from less talented jobs

Capitalists (Boureoisie)

people who own and operate factories for profits, owners of means of production technology and labor.

Proletarians (working class)

People who sell labor for wages, lack ownership of the means of production

Experience of isolation and misery because of powerlessness
Why no Marxist Revolution?

Why is capitalism still thriving.
1. A lot of people are involved -stocks
2. Higher living standard
3. More worker organizations
4. Greater legal protections

Socioeconomic Status (SES)
A composite ranking based on various dimensions of social inequality
Conspicuous Consumption

Buying and using products because of the "statement" they make about social position
-nice cars

Earnings from work or investments
Total value of assets minus debts
Absolute Poverty
Can't meet the basic needs of survival
-food, clothes
Relative Poverty

The lack of resources compared to others that have more
-Big problem for capitalist economies

High-Prestige vs. Low-Prestige
High: A lot of time, experience and training
-typically men
Low: Not a lot of experience, lower income
John Kenneth Galbraith
The Affluent society
The Affluent Society
Our societies model = growth
-Hard to grow more in our society because we have everything we need
-To grow, we create wants (created by advertising and planned obsolesce)
-Money buys everything
Planning for something to become useless very soon
Oliver James

The modern form of Affluent society : Affluenza

Modern day Affluent Society
-High level of emotional distress in wealthy countries
-Expected to find them happy
-Anxiety, eating disorders
-"A rich man's worry"
The Original Affluent Society

-Hunters and Gatherers
-Subsistence lifestyle
-Do what they want
-During hard times: Lay low, drink tea, no energy

Hunting and Gathering Economies
-Do not recognize concept of poverty
-Not poor, free
Poverty can only be recognized in a society where there is ______
Distribution differences in income vs. wealth
Income: 5ths. Evenly
Wealth: Uneven. Top 5% accounts for whole populations wealth
Life Chances

The opportunity one has to access societies resources
-Social class plays a huge role, rich have more access
-Survive birth
-Good school

The Politics of stratification: Blame the Poor vs. Blame Society

Blame the poor - "culture of poverty" (Lewis)
-They are "different", dont have character
-Can't defer gratification
-Don't have values that we have

Blame Society - structural (Wilson)
-No jobs, natural disaster

The Sociology of Stratification: Functionalism vs Conflict Theorists

Funct: Necessary
Conflict: Historical Advantage

The Uses of Poverty
Herbert Gans
-Not for society as a whole, but for the "non-poor"
-Have to make some people desperate so they do the work that we aren't willing to do
Upper-uppers vs Lower-uppers
Born vs Work for it
Intragenerational social mobility
Change in social position during a persons lifetime
Intergenerational social mobility
Change in social position in a child's life in relation to their parents
Global Stratification
Patterns of social inequality in the world as a whole

High-Income Countries

The nations with highest overall standards of living, highly industrialized, industrialize earlier,
-67 countries, 14.2% of worlds pop.
-GDP greater than $12,000, 66% worlds total income
-Capital-Intesive (factories, machines)
-US, Canada,Mexico -47% of land area

Middle-Income Countries

Average standard of living, Diverse group often divided into upper and lower middle I.G
-71.7% Worlds Population, 31% world's total income

-GDP Between $2,500 and $12,000, 19% of income
-Panama, Eastern Europe, Peru, Brazil
-35% of land area

Low-Income Countries

Diverse Group, Nations with a low standard of living -Mostly agricultural in early phase of industrialization
-56 countries, 12% of world pop. -7% of worlds total income
-below $2,500 GDP, 2% of income -18% of land
- hunger disease -live in cities
-Central, East Africa, Asia, Ethiopia, Bangladesh


Most industrialized
Less industrialized
Poor, nonindustrialized

Negative: -product of Cold war policies
-grouped too many countries in third-world countries

Low, Middle, High - Income model advantages

-Focuses on economic rather than political systems
-Gives better picture of the relative economic development of various countries

Chattel Slavery
1 person owns another
Child Slavery
Poor families let their children on the streets to do what they can to survive
Debt Bondage

Employers hold workers captive by paying them too little to meet their debts

Servile forms of Marriage
Another type of slavery
-against woman's will
Human Trafficking

Movement of people for forced labor

6 Explanations of Global Poverty

1. Technology
-farming is necessary b/c no tech.
2. Population Growth
-poorest countries have highest birth rates
3. Cultural Patterns
-Poor societies are traditional, resist change, even for better
4. Social Stratification
-Distribute wealth unequally
5. Gender Inequality
-Keep women from holding jobs
6. Global Power Relationships
-Some countries grow at expense of others


The process by which some nations enrich themselves through political and economic control of other nations


A new form of global power relationships that involves not direct political control but economic exploitation by multinational corps.

Multinational Corporation
A large business that operates in many countries
Modernization theory

-A model of economic and social development that explains global inequality in terms of technological and cultural differences between nations
-Start at low level, get higher
-Tradition = greatest barrier for economic development
-Problem: All countries should be on same level

In the modernization theory, how do we reduce the birth rate?
Give woman an education

T/F: Half the worlds wealth is owned by 2% of population


T/F Gates and Buffet have more wealth than 34 poorest countries have combined
Highest vs Lowest GDP
Norway vs Niger
"Material World" - Peter Menzel
Asked people to bring belongings outside to compare people
US ranks ____ in infant mortality
Ties with Poland
US is a _____ economy
Post Industrial
12% manufacturing
2% agriculture
Stages of Modernization
1. Traditional stage
-Honor the past, build lives around families, little freedom
2. Take off stage
-Use talents and imagination to spark econ. growth, goods, more individualism
3. Drive to technological maturity
-growth is widely accepted, absolute poverty greatly reduced, schooling
4. High mass consumption
-higher living standards, "need" for expanding goods
The Role of Rich Nations
1. Controlling population
-giving birth control
2. Increasing food production
-Green Revolution
3. Introducing industrial technology
4. Providing Foreign Aid

Dependency Theory

A model of economic and social development that explains global inequality in terms of the historical exploitation of poor nations by rich ones
-Social Conflict
-All in a system together, each have own roles
-Rich: consume Poor: provide
-Better off in the past than now

Wallerstein's Capitalist World Economy(dependency)

-Rich depend on poor
-Resources flow from periphery to core (poor to rich)
(remaining: semiperiphery)
-World economy only benefits rich HOW?
1. Narrow, export-oriented economies
-poor develop few industries
2. Lack of industrial capacity
-rich buy materials, then poor has to buy from them
3. Foreign Debt
When the global economy is based in high-income countries ____ is involved.
-think poverty is inevitable. "natural process"
The role of rich nations between modernization and dependency
M: Rich countries PRODUCE wealth though capital investment and technology
D: how countries DISTRIBUTE wealth, rich have overdeveloped them, and underdeveloped everyone else
Unequal distribution of wealth?
-most people around world are better off in absolute terms
-M: government challenges this because they play such a huge role in economic growth
-D: Poor countries doubt M theory, and want to place everything in Government control
All countries contain ____ poverty, but low-income nations face _____ poverty.
Relative, Absolute

Structural-Functional Approach to Social Stratification

-Helps society operate
-Davis-Moore Thesis
-Caste: rewarded for duties at birth
-Class: unequal rewards attract ablest people
Symbolic-Interaction Approach to Social Stratification
-Look for cues to social standing
-Conspicuous Consumption
-Socialize with others of same class
Social-Conflict Approach to Social Stratification
-Classes, benefitting some, hurting others
-Marx: capitalism puts econ. prod. under capitalists, exploit proletarians (sell wages)
-Weber: 3 dimensions of class: economic class, social status, prestige or power, conflict is between these people in different positions on SES
Timeline of Social Stratification
Hunting and Gathering
Horticultural and Pastoral
Gerhard Lenski
Advancing technology increases social stratification, (most intense in agrarian societies)

What reduces social stratification?


Social Stratification DIMENSIONS

Power: income and wealth
Prestige: status
Family Ancestry: race, gender

Upper Class

5% of population -earn more than $180,000 yr -inherited wealth, own business, and hold large numbers of stock (shares)

Middle Class

Working in white collar and lower managerial occupations -occupational prestige, income, and wealth split M.C into Upper and Lower M.C -boundaries of social classes are so fluid -diverse group of occupations, lifestyles, and people who earn stable income -40-45% to 50% of population Upper MC $100,000-$180,000 Lower M.C $38,000 to $100,000
upper: significant wealth attend college

Working Class

Broadly composed of people working in blue-collar or manual labor occupations -20% of American households fall into W.C
Annual incme $20,000 to $38,000 1/3 go to college

Lower Class and Underclass

L.C composed of ppl work part-time or not at all -annual income typically below $20,000 -20% american households "Under Class"- situated at bottom of class system, people in the highest-poverty neighborhoods in the inner city -under the radar -"New Urban Poor" -many ethnic minority backgrounds

In 2011 the government classifies ___ million people as in poverty

46 million in US
15% of population
-34.9% are under under 18, 18 to 64 57.3%
-23.6% Black 28.6% Hispanic 41.5% white

Englands "caste" system

-Middle Ages
-First Estate: Church leaders, power
-Second Estate: rest of aristocracy, 5%, King and Queen
-Primogeniture (all land to pass through son)
-Third Estate: All others, commoners, worked land

Kuznets Curve
-Simon Kuznets
-Countries already industrialized have less income inequality that farming nations
-Compares countries at different levels, so cant tell us the future

Feminization of Poverty

Growing numbers of women who are single mothers, divorced, or separated, increasing proportion of poor. Poor dominated by single mothers and children

Lower Class

20% of population
-Lack financial security