Textbook Notes (362,935)
Canada (158,107)
Sociology (1,053)
SOCA01H3 (480)
Chapter 8

Chapter 8

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Malcolm Mac Kinnon

CHAPTER 8: SOCIAL STRATIFICATION • Increasing # of wealthy people travel to foreign countries with their surgeons in attempt to prolong life through purchase and use of body parts • Poor people more likely than rich people to suffer illnesses that could be alleviated by organ transplantation, but they are less likely to be offered transplant opportunities • Success at formal schooling is the key to acquiring economically valued skilled • Importance of education as a determinant of occupation and income continues to increase • Human capital- the sum of useful skills and knowledge that an individual possesses • People must supply talent and effort to accumulate human capital but rates of success also depend on the human capital their families accumulated in previous generations • Human capital theory stresses the increasing centrality of education as a factor affecting economic success • Social capital- refers to the networks or connections that individuals possess • individuals are more likely to succeed if they have strong bonds of trust, cooperation, mutual respect and obligation with well positioned individuals or families • knowing the right people and having strong links to them helps in attaining opportunities • Cultural capital is the stock of learning and skills that increases the chance of securing a superior job ○ Cultural capital emphasizes a set of social skills people have, their ability to impress others, to use language and images effectively and to influence and persuade people ○ Cultural capital emphasizes your impression management skills, your ability to influence others • Families higher in social hierarchy enjoy more social capital of all types • Wealth inequality is increasing in Canada • Deprivation occurs when a family cannot acquire the essentials, not necessarily when income is too low • Low income cutoff- statistic Canada’s term for the income threshold below which a family devotes a larger share of its income to the necessities of food, shelter and clothing than an average family would, likely resulting in straightened circumstances • myths about the poor: ○ people are poor because they don’t want to work ○ the overwhelming majority of poor people are immigrants ○ the welfare rolls are crammed with young people who ought to be earning a living ○ most poor people are trapped in poverty • poverty is not a consequence of individual attributes for the most part, even though these are important in some cases • evidence that supports explanations found on personal deficits is often lacking • more often the problem is one of not enough good jobs • analysts stress social policy as a factor affecting poverty levels • system of tax collection and tax allocation illustrates another way that social policies affect poverty • many Canadians argue that providing welfare benefits dampens the work ethic and perpetuates poverty • the political will does not currently exist in Canada to change our social policies to alleviate poverty • Canada is one of the richest countries in the world • Angola is one of the poorest nations on earth- poverty 70% • life expectancy in Canada is 79 years • Global inequality- refers to differences in the economic ranking of countries • Cross national variations in internal stratification are differences among countries in their stratification systems • Gini index- a measure of income inequality. Its value ranges from 0 (which means that every household earns exactly the same amount of money) to 1 (which means that all income is earned by a single household) ○ In the real world, nearly all societies have gini indices between 0.2 and 0.6 ○ Canada 0.331 ○ The higher the inequality, the higher poverty rates tend to occur • Social stratification refers to the way in which society is organized in layers or strata • Ascription based stratification -allocation of rank depends on characteristics a person is born with • Achievement based stratification system - allocation of rank depends on a person’s accomplishments • Social mobility refers to movement up or down the stratification system • Caste system- an almost pure ascription based stratification system in which occupations and marriage partners are assigned on the bases of caste membersh
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