PSCC Ch 12 Inequality and Stratification | Race And Ethnicity In The United States Census | Social Stratification

Stratification and Inequality

“Nobody cares more about free enterprise and competition and about the best man winning than the man who inherited his father’s store or farm.”
USF Intro to Sociology Fall 2011 Prof. Zavestoski

Wednesday, October 26, 11

“The real explanation of why the poor are where they are is that they made the mistake of being born to the wrong parents, in the wrong section of the country, in the wrong industry, or in the wrong racial or ethnic group. Once that mistake has been made, they could have been paragons of will and morality, but most of them would never even have had a chance to get out of the other America.” Michael Harrington, The Other America (1962).

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Concepts to cover...
stratification legitimating rationales caste, estate, class systems of stratification Marx’s conception of class bourgeoisie, proletariat Weber’s conception of class life style vs life chances (position in market)
Wednesday, October 26, 11

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power vs authority status & prestige socioeconomic status social mobility
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horizontal and vertical inter- and intragenerational

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open systems vs closed systems exogamy and endogamy

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Stratification: What and How

Social stratification is the system, and the outcome of the system, that evaluates and rewards people on the basis of arbitrary characteristics with scarce, desired goods; thus resulting in social strata, or layers, of society where people in lower ranking groups receive less of the desired goods than people in the higher ranking groups

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Stratification: What and How

Stratification systems are:

Persistent (they last over long periods of time) Resistant to change Upheld by legitimating rationales (i.e., reasons for accepting social stratification as fair and just)

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Wednesday, October 26, 11

Stratification: Marx vs. Weber

Marx:

Capitalists/Owners of Production (Bourgeoisie); and Laborers (Proletariat)

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Weber:

Money, power (e.g., authority) and status (e.g., prestige) shape class position Lifestyle and life chances are functions of class position

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Economic  Dimension

Power  Dimension Do  those  who  control   capital  control  the   power? • Can  people  expand   their  power? • Can  you  exercise   power  without  being   wealthy?                                                          

Prestige  Dimension Prestige  is  voluntary   given • Which  similar   characteristics  do   prestigious  people   possess? • Can  you  be  born  into   prestige?

Bourgeoisie  vs.   Proletariat:  Whoever   controls  the  capital   controls  the  legal,   educational  and   governmental   systems Income  vs.  wealth:   Most  people  have   income  but  who   controls  the  wealth?

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Mobility: Or Moving through the Strata
• •

There is no mobility in closed stratification systems; Open systems may have:

Horizontal mobility: between two positions in the same class Vertical mobility: Up and down between classes Intergenerational: One generation exceeds the position of the previous Intragenerational: Within lifetime mobility

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Wednesday, October 26, 11

Each of the layers in a stratification system is a social  class. Social  Stratification

Social  Class  is  segment  of   society  whose  members  hold   similar  amounts  of  resources   and  share  values,  norms  and   an  identifiable  lifestyle.

Wednesday, October 26, 11

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Upper  Class  – investors, heirs, chief

! executive officers; annual income over $4 million dollars

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Upper  Middle  Class  –  upper-level managers, professionals, owners of medium-sized businesses; annual income $150,000-4 million dollars

Wednesday, October 26, 11

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Middle  Class  –  lower-level managers, semiprofessionals, craftspeople, foremen, nonretail salespeople, clerical; annual income $45,000-$150,000

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Working  Class  – low-skill manual, clerical, retail sales workers; annual income $30,000-45,000

Wednesday, October 26, 11

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Working  Poor – lowest-paid manual, retail, and service workers, people employed in low-skill jobs with the lowest pay who do not earn enough to rise out of poverty; annual income $20,000-30,000

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Underclass – unemployed people, people in parttime menial jobs, people receiving public assistance; people typically unemployed who came from families that have been poor for generations

Wednesday, October 26, 11

The 2009 Poverty Guidelines for the 48 Contiguous States and the District of Columbia Persons in family 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Poverty guideline $10,830 14,570 18,310 22,050 25,790 29,530 33,270 37,010

For families with more than 8 persons, add $3,740 for each additional person.
Wednesday, October 26, 11

Poverty Rate of People by Race, Age (under 18 years old), and Family Relationship (i.e. Families with Female Householder, no Husband present) for 2008

Race

All People

The Young (under 18 years old) 19% 10.6% 34.7% 14.6% 30.6%

All races White alone, non-Hispanic Black alone Asian alone Hispanic of any race

13.2 % 8.6% 24.7% 11.8% 23.2%

Families with Female Householder, No Husband present 28.7 % 21.5% 40.5% 16% 40.5%

Source: http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/poverty08.html

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Who Did Not Have Health Insurance in America in 2008? (%)

White,  non-­‐ Hispanic Black Hispanic   Age  18  to  34

10.4 19.5 32.1 26.9

Income  Less  than   24.5 $25,000 Income  $25,000   to  $49,999 21.1

Worked  Full-­‐Time   17 in  Past  Year Worked  Part-­‐Time   23.4 in  Past  Year

Foreign  Born,  Not   43.8 a  CiMzen
Source: U.S. Census. In 2008, 15.4%, or 46.2 million people in America, did not have health insurance.
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Social  Stratification

Wednesday, October 26, 11

Intersectionality: Class, Ethnicity and Gender
Common principles of intersectionality are: Individuals belong to multiple demographic categories, so that the same individual has a specific gender, an ethnicity, and a social class position, among others; Some categories provide advantages and some disadvantages, with each having roots in social stratification structure.
Wednesday, October 26, 11

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