Eitzen - Ch 10 Notes.docx

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University of California - Irvine
Chuck O' Connell

Ch 10 - Class wealth- a person’s net worth income- amount of money earned The gap between wealthy and poor widens because inheritance passes from one generation to the next African American families are less than 1/10th the average white family’s wealth Income inequality is increasing in US society Why? poor don’t do well in school African american, Latino, Native American students lag behind white peers poor schools don’t have the resources to help poor kids succeed, while rich schools do Status depends on prestige - ie, difference between occupations eg: doctor versus a teacher, doctor is more respected Importance of task performed, degree of authority and responsibility inherent in the job, native intelligence required, knowledge and skills required, dignity of the job, financial rewards of the occupation Consequences of increasing inequality large economic and social fragmentation poor people are not connected to either political party, political process works against their interests erosion of social solidarity social class - when a number of individuals occupy the same relative economic rank in the stratification system no clear class boundaries, and not homogenous group, but there is a degree of identification generally correlated with income distribution Order Model’s conception of social class 1. Upper upper class are the old rich - think like Tom Buchanan 2. Lower upper class are the new rich - like Gatsby 3. Upper Middle class - professionals 4. Lower middle class - white collar workers (ie teachers) 5. Upper lower class - blue collar workers (repetitive work that’s unfulfilling) 6. Lower lower class - unskilled laborers Conflict Model’s Social class 1. Ruling class - all the wealth and power. Control EVERYTHING. 2. Professional-Managerial Class - some control over others but are still limited, they oppose the interests of the working class 3. Small Business Owners - entrepreneurs 4. Working Class - white collar and blue collar lumped together 5. Poor - minimum wages/unemployed Summary: (p. 213) Conflict model divides society into conflicting classes that contend for control Focus on who gives orders or takes orders (POWER) More extreme/liberal, and divides class by Oppression vs Exploited people? Order model Focuses on prestige Lifestyle similarities Consequences of Social class positions Health: Economic disadvantage = health disadvantage: Rich people have access to healthcare and therefore have better health. Rich people work in nicer work environments and aren’t exposed to dangerous environments. Family: Families of rich people are more secure. Poor people divorce more because financial difficulties drive them apart Justice: Low income people more likely to be arrested than rich people. Rich people viewed as good people. Education: poor people get poor quality education. Standardized tests are biased so they don’t succeed. Social Mobility social mobility - individual’s movement within the class structure of society vertical mobility - movement upward or downward in social class horizontal mobility change from position to another of about equal prestige intergenerational mobility - vertical movement comparin
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