Social Class Explorations and Expansions on Starbuck’s Text The American mythology: America is a classless society. Americ...
Defining Social Class <ul><li>Weber: An ordering of all persons in society by degrees of economic resources, prestige, and...
Politicized version of social class as seen by Karl Marx. Marx and socialist theorists emphasized the process of exploitat...
Starbuck’s Model:  Four Social Classes <ul><li>Ideal: Hypothetical model of most significant characteristics of social phe...
Gilbert-Kahl Model of  Social Class in the United States Source:  Dennis Gilbert,  The American Class Structure  (Wadswort...
<ul><li>Considers four dimensions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Occupation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul></ul><ul...
Starbuck:  Lower-Class Families <ul><li>Tenuous connection to economy—reliability to provide decent life in question </li>...
ERMA GOULART SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: LOWER Hartford, W.Va. Ms. Goulart, 67, a widowed retiree with a high school education, ...
Starbuck:  Working-Class Families <ul><li>Income provides reliably for minimum needs for modest lifestyle </li></ul><ul><u...
MAURICE MITCHELL SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: WORKING Wilson, N.C. Mr. Mitchell, 37, manages his family's septic tank company, ea...
<ul><li>Secure, comfortable income; lives well </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can afford nice house, car, college education for chi...
STEVE SCHOENECK SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: MIDDLE Fergus Falls, Minn. Mr. Schoeneck, 39, is an accounting manager for an electr...
Starbuck:  Upper-Class Families <ul><li>Amassed wealth, privilege, and often prestige </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Recognized as ...
BARBARA FREEBORN SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: UPPER Northville, Mo. Ms. Freeborn, 47, a marketing executive, and her husband, a b...
<ul><li>Considers three dimensions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Level of Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Amount of Income </...
 
Class Mobility:  Moving Up From  Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
International Social Mobility From  Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
<ul><li>Ideology  = American society is  very open . </li></ul><ul><li>2/3 to 3/4  of all children  inherit  socio-economi...
 
Global Stratification & Inequality Ranking societies by power & rewards <ul><li>Which forms of power are important? </li><...
<ul><ul><li>Highly concentrated between societies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Absolute Poverty highest in Low Income set </...
Next time… <ul><li>How families of different classes differ  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kinship networks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul...
One Story of Social Mobility Nickled  and Dimed
Culture and Social Class <ul><li>Class markers  – how do we communicate class? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Clothes, cars, styles...
 
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Social Class

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Basic concepts of social class, from a sociology course

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  1. 1. Social Class Explorations and Expansions on Starbuck’s Text The American mythology: America is a classless society. America is a meritocracy. Reality: Both mobility & privilege occur
  2. 2. Defining Social Class <ul><li>Weber: An ordering of all persons in society by degrees of economic resources, prestige, and privilege </li></ul><ul><li>Analytical definitions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Marx: relation to means of production </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Weber: Marx + prestige </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Empirical definitions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Based in data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compare strata (layers) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cultural Analysis </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Differences in behaviors, attitudes, objects </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Politicized version of social class as seen by Karl Marx. Marx and socialist theorists emphasized the process of exploitation, in which workers do not receive back in wages the full value they contribute. Wealth created by what upper classes extract from lower ones.
  4. 4. Starbuck’s Model: Four Social Classes <ul><li>Ideal: Hypothetical model of most significant characteristics of social phenomenon in extreme form </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Upper </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Middle </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Working </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lower </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Gilbert-Kahl Model of Social Class in the United States Source: Dennis Gilbert, The American Class Structure (Wadsworth, fifth edition, 1998),
  6. 6. <ul><li>Considers four dimensions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Occupation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Income (money earned through work/investments) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wealth (assets owned / money saved) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interactive graphic – see how your family stacks up on dimensions of class </li></ul><ul><li>Up-to-date dollar amounts / prestige ratings </li></ul><ul><li>Link on WebCT under “Resources” </li></ul><ul><li>From New York Times 2005 </li></ul>How Class Works: Empirical How Class Works
  7. 7. Starbuck: Lower-Class Families <ul><li>Tenuous connection to economy—reliability to provide decent life in question </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“Working poor”—low-paying jobs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Frequently unemployed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Live in substandard housing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Semi-skilled and unskilled workers = low wage workers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Some on cash assistance from government </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Others are homeless </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. ERMA GOULART SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: LOWER Hartford, W.Va. Ms. Goulart, 67, a widowed retiree with a high school education, strung beads for a jewelry maker, worked for sewage and coal companies, and owned a restaurant. &quot;I worked hard for what I have,&quot; she said. She sees unfairness. &quot;The rich get more benefits and tax breaks and the poor people don’t,&quot; she said. &quot;Being raised poor, it was kind of hard,&quot; she recalled. She helped bring up her 11 siblings and now does the same for her disabled sister’s children. &quot;I think the American dream is to help people,&quot; Ms. Goulart said. From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  9. 9. Starbuck: Working-Class Families <ul><li>Income provides reliably for minimum needs for modest lifestyle </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Modest home or apartment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Car </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Money for public college education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Men tend to hold manual jobs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Layoffs more common </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Less likely to have fringe benefits </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. MAURICE MITCHELL SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: WORKING Wilson, N.C. Mr. Mitchell, 37, manages his family's septic tank company, earning up to $75,000 a year. &quot;I hold the mortgage to my home,&quot; he said. &quot;I have the vehicle I want.&quot; A high school graduate, he never married but has two sons. &quot;I'm able to raise my children in a manner so they won’t be picked on or laughed at in school.&quot; He said he believed that &quot;a man can start with nothing and work hard and get somewhere.&quot; But the &quot;gap between rich and poor will never close,&quot; he said. &quot;It's hard to get wealthy if your family isn’t.&quot; From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  11. 11. <ul><li>Secure, comfortable income; lives well </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can afford nice house, car, college education for children, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Professionals and medium-sized business owners </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jobs include fringe benefits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Women professionals have occupations that require college educations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Women are generally underrepresented at this income level </li></ul></ul></ul>Starbuck: Middle-Class Families
  12. 12. STEVE SCHOENECK SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: MIDDLE Fergus Falls, Minn. Mr. Schoeneck, 39, is an accounting manager for an electrical utility. He and his wife, a preschool teacher, both college graduates, earn $85,000 a year. They have two daughters in school and a son, a sophomore at M.I.T. &quot;You always have the opportunity to try and move forward financially,&quot; he said. &quot;For me, the American dream is to earn a reasonable living and to be able to spend quality time with my family and my friends in a community that cares. Over all, I've achieved the American dream. I'm happy.&quot; From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  13. 13. Starbuck: Upper-Class Families <ul><li>Amassed wealth, privilege, and often prestige </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Recognized as cultural and social elite </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Owners or senior managers of large corporations, banks, and law firms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many wives do not work—volunteering and social events take up time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Little research on this class </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. BARBARA FREEBORN SELF-DESCRIBED CLASS: UPPER Northville, Mo. Ms. Freeborn, 47, a marketing executive, and her husband, a business owner, earn more than $150,000 a year. To her, the rich get &quot;preferential treatment, where they don’t have to pay for things.&quot; But she sees many opportunities to make money now, &quot;in technology and health care and finance.&quot; Still, she said, America has changed since her parents' generation. &quot;I don’t think they really aspired to have more than the house with a porch and to come home and have dinner.&quot; Today, she said, &quot;everybody wants more.&quot; From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  15. 15. <ul><li>Considers three dimensions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Level of Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Amount of Income </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Occupational group </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interactive graphic – see how the distribution of income for particular occupation groups </li></ul><ul><li>Up-to-date dollar amounts </li></ul><ul><li>Link on WebCT under “Resources” </li></ul><ul><li>From New York Times 2005 </li></ul>Income by Education Income by Education
  16. 17. Class Mobility: Moving Up From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  17. 18. International Social Mobility From Class Matters Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company
  18. 19. <ul><li>Ideology = American society is very open . </li></ul><ul><li>2/3 to 3/4 of all children inherit socio-economic status (estimates vary). </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1979 Carnegie study : son of lawyer 27 times more likely to get high paying job than son of custodian . </li></ul></ul>Social Reproduction of Class Source: Scientific American http://www.sciam.com/1999/0699issue/0699numbers.html
  19. 21. Global Stratification & Inequality Ranking societies by power & rewards <ul><li>Which forms of power are important? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic power is dominant </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Political power is secondary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social honor not important </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Positions in global system defined by levels of development & productivity </li></ul>
  20. 22. <ul><ul><li>Highly concentrated between societies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Absolute Poverty highest in Low Income set </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Education & Health </li></ul>High Income Middle Income Low Income Adult Literacy 99% 86% 62% School Enrollment 93% 74% 51% Life Expectancy 78 years 69 years 59 years <ul><li>Income & Poverty </li></ul>
  21. 23. Next time… <ul><li>How families of different classes differ </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kinship networks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender roles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Child rearing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Impact of consumer culture on American society (video clip if time) </li></ul><ul><li>THE END </li></ul>
  22. 24. One Story of Social Mobility Nickled and Dimed
  23. 25. Culture and Social Class <ul><li>Class markers – how do we communicate class? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Clothes, cars, styles: purchased goods </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Addresses, schools, neighborhoods </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Trouble in Paradise </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Maintaining Class Boundaries </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Attitudes and behaviors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ways that higher classes detect lower class people among them </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More WASP Lessons </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Groups within classes – some have been studied a lot </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Yuppies, BoBos, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What would your room say about you? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>You Are Your Stuff </li></ul></ul>

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