Marxists and Weberians generally agree, despite the claims of other sociologists such functionalists, new right theorists and postmodernists, that there remain substantial inequalities between different social classes. Occupation is the most common indicator of social class used in present times, but scales vary as to the number of classes identified and the definitions of each class in terms of occupations.
Weber argued that the establishment and power of this ethic had the unintended consequences of assisting the development of capitalism. Those with considerable property or wealth have the means to develop a certain style of life, and those without property are not able to exercise this style.
Weber notes the possibility that classes may form groups, but considers this to be unlikely. Groups unrelated to property could also be formed.
It may be negative where someone does not live up to ordinary standards, where behaviour is socially disapproved associated with ethnicity, outcast groups, those who do not properly adhere to particular religious rituals or accepted practices.
Marxists have also argued that status divisions are closely linked to class divisions, that is, the class in possession of the greatest proportion of property and wealth will necessarily also possess greater status and power.
Both class and power can be placed into the dichotomies of structure and agency. Producers have their numbers and their key locations in the economic process. This could mean that individuals pursue perceived class situation in their own best interests, without considering the common interest of all those in this situation.
The ownership or non-ownership of property is one factor that affects life chances. Forms of honour associated with male status may even be denied to those women who have property or have acquired a prominent or high income position.
Other parties, such as the Canadian Liberal Party or the Saskatchewan NDP attempt to put together programs which appeal to a wide variety of interests. Peer groups or groups based on musical tastes or lifestyles factors may be important in terms of status honour, but are not really status groups in that they have much effect on life chances.
Markets concern gains and losses through exchange and, in their workings, are not associated with honour, although most of us expect certain standards of conduct and behaviour to be adopted by those engaging in market exchange. Social status and honour is a key concept in this essay, with Weber being concerned with social honour and its origins, and distribution.
The problems inherent in identifying the number of different social classes in modern society are many and varied and include broad questions of ontology, as well as detailed ones of definitions and boundaries. The class system sets some of the parameters of "structure" within which individuals act, but it also creates some of the motivations and features of consciousness that constitute the agency of class actors.
It is the shareholders or ultimate owners who obtain the greatest benefit from the economic situation. So both power and class are simultaneously features of structure and agency within a complex society; and the configurations created by class and power are causally inter-related without being isomorphic.
Power is needed to protect the glittering shop windows of Johannesburg from disaffected young people. Since honour and dishonour are socially formed, those who are members of a status group associate meaning with the characteristics honoured.
That is, those having similar economic interests with respect to particular markets are in a similar position.In conclusion, like the Ancient Romans the present day United States culture consists of a class based patriarchal society, while males hold the majority of the power.
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It's easy to integrate debates. Social Class in the United States Essay Words | 7 Pages. There is much debate about the issue of social class in the United States. There are arguments about whether social classes are distinctly separate or fluid, dependent upon one’s community or society as a whole, and if they are subjective or objective (Hughes and Jenkins).
ADVERTISEMENTS: Read this comprehensive essay on Social Class! One of the important elements of social stratification is the ‘Class’. A social class is ‘a category or group of persons having a definite status in society which permanently determines their relations to other groups’.
The Class Structure in the U.S. Class Structure in the U.S.
American society is stratified into social classes based on wealth, income, educational attainment, occupation, and social networks. educational attainment, occupation, income, or membership in a subculture or social network.
Social class in the United States is a controversial.Download