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SOC1101 (732)
Lecture 11

SOC1101 – Lecture 11.docx

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University of Ottawa
Willow Scobie

SOC1101 – Lecture 11 Professor Scobie Lec. 2 Analyzing Social Class (Capitalism) Marxist Terms - Social class reflects position to the means of production - Owning class (Bourgeoisie) - Working class (Proletariat) Contemporary Description - A large group of people who occupy the same or similar economic position in the wide society Dynamics of Power  Class is relational o There has to be a relationship involved in order for this class to mean anything o These classes interests are always in conflict/in odds with each other  Classes are structurally in conflict  Are not monolithic o Even amongst the working classes, there is still a lot of differences o Amongst the working classes, they are not all the same as each other o Within each class they are diverse  Can change over time  Linked to power o It is always about power  Have global context Within cities, across countries, around the world, class differences are experienced in a range of different ways. The poverty in Ottawa doesn’t compare to the poverty experienced in other parts of the planet. It is important to have a good sense of the pattern. Wealth Distribution  Canada o Between 1976 and 2009  Earning gap between lowest 20% and highest 20% grew from $92,3000$ to 177,500$ o In the same period, everyone except the richest 10% has seen their work time increase  Between 1997 and 2007, top CEOs in Canada saw their salaries increase by 444%  By the end of 2009, 3.8% of Canadian households controlled $1.78 trillion USA Wealth Inequality in America  Initial responses to the context/central argument o We are way worse off than we thought we were o That the income distribution is that those at the bottom end of the scale are earning far less that people think they are and that the gap between lowest and highest gap is getting larger and more defined Capitalism  A way of organizing economic life:  Distinguishing traits: o Private ownership of the means of production o Profit as an incentive o Free competition  For markets t
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