Chapter 8: (pgs. 186-210)
1) Patterns of Social Inequality (pgs 186 - 199)
Shipwrecks and Inequality
Social Stratification: Refers to the way in which society is organized in layers or strata.
Economic Inequality in Canada
On average (2008), Canadian families earned almost $79,000/year.
Explanations of Income Inequality
Human capital: The sum of useful skills and knowledge that an individual possesses.
Social capital: The network or connections that individuals possess.
Cultural capital: The stock of knowledge, tastes, and habits that legitimate the maintenance
of status and power.
Income versus Wealth
Individual or Family Estimated Wealth
1. Thomas Family $23.36 B
2. Galen Weston $8.5 B
3. Irving Family $7.46 B
4. Rogers Family $6.02 B
5. James Pattison $5.53 B
6. Paul Desmarais Sr. $4.28 B
7. Bernard Sherman $3.94 B
8. Jeff Skoll $3.56 B
9. Saputo family $3.52 B
10. Fred and Ron Mannix $3.18 B
Income and Poverty
Low-income cutoff: Statistics Canada’s term for the income threshold below which a family
devotes at least 20% more of its income to the necessities of food, shelter, and clothing
than an average family would, likely resulting straitened circumstances
While the average income of Canadians has grown in the last half century, extensive income
Differences in human, social, and cultural capital contribute to existing inequalities.
Levels of poverty are better explained by structural factors than individual factors. Chapter 8: (pgs. 186-210)
2) Theories of Stratification (pgs 199 - 204)
Feudalism: Was a legal arrangement in preindustrial Europe that bound peasants to
the land and obliged them to give their landlords a set part of their harvest. In
exchange, landlords were required to protect peasants from marauders and open their
storehouses to feed the peasants if crops failed.
Class consciousness: Being aware of membership in a class.
Class: Determined by a person’s relationship to the means of production.
Bourgeoisie: Owners of the means of production, including factories, tools, and land.
They do not do any physical labour. Their income derives from profits.
Proletariat: The working class. Members of the proletariat do physical labour but do
not own means of production. They are thi