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Lecture 6

Lecture 6

by OneClass91 , Fall 2009
8 Pages

Course Code
Malcolm Mac Kinnon

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Stratification and Inequality
Occupational Hierarchy of prestige
c.Chartered accountants
f. Architects
2.White Collar
a.Successful independent entrepreneur (they dont necessarily have to have
a.Computer types, software +hardware+ programming
4.Skilled Trades (aristocracy of labour)
a.Automotive Technicians
b.Tool + Dye
5.Semi-skilled work: McJobs
a.McJobs (service sectors)
b.Sales clerk
c.Manufacturing (Assembly)
d.Truck Drivers
b.Migrant farm works (see John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath)
c.Street sweepers
d.Shoe shiners
Grapes of Wrath- in the 1930s hundreds of people died due to heatstroke, people had to sell
their farm, one family had to give their farm and settle as migrant farm workers elsewhere
Conflict theorists like a political explanation for inequality
Social complexity argument-job complexity, how many distinct occupations can you
find in a society
Complex division of labour-number of occupations
Social differentiation-comes from biology, some organisms are more complex than
In our world there are about 4000 distinct unique occupations
Some give more prestige than others
Some relationships(inequality) are established historically
If postal workers start making more money, then teachers would pressure school
boards to increase their salaries. To establish the historical relationships, postal
workers should be lower than teachers.
People who work in a given occupation will use the legitimacy argument
oI make more money than you do because it is justified. I have more training
education and skills than you do
Explanations of Income Inequality
oFactors in economic success
Degree of natural talent
Degree of effort
Level of education
Social Capital (peoples networks and connections)
Cultural capital (stock of learning and skills that increases chance of
securing a superior job)
Human capital theorists- believe each and every one of us have skills and knowledge
Human Capital- sum of useful skills and knowledge than an individual possesses
There is a powerful relationship between schooling and income
Inequality is inevitable
oNo society can exist without a political system, social survival
oPolitical System is made up of coordination and decision making
Inequality of power
oYou have this once you set up this political system
oLeaders have more power than followers
If power differences are inevitable, then so are material differences inevitable
Materials differences means money and objects of wealth
Elite theorists- Michels
oIron Law of Oligarchy- means a small group of people running society
oOnce people get in power they start feathering their nests
oReformers may promise change but inequality and corruption always return
Lord Acton: Power corrupts, absolute powers corrupts absolutely

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Stratification and Inequality Occupational Hierarchy of prestige 1. Professionals a. Teachersprofs b. Physicians c. Chartered accountants d. Dentists e. Engineers f. Architects g. Lawyers 2. White Collar a. Successful independent entrepreneur (they dont necessarily have to have education) b. Executives c. Managerial d. Supervisory e. Clerical 3. Technical a. Computer types, software +hardware+ programming 4. Skilled Trades (aristocracy of labour) a. Automotive Technicians b. Tool + Dye c. Electricians d. Carpenters e. Tinsmiths
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