Sociology Class Notes (Week 4)
Sociology Class Notes (Week 4) Sociology 112
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jonathan Thomas on Sunday September 25, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Sociology 112 at Brigham Young University taught by Professor Ben Gibbs in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 2 views.
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Date Created: 09/25/16
SOC 112 Current Social Problems Professor Gibbs CLASS NOTES (Week 4) The structure of a society affects much more than just one isolated problem. People are shaped by formal (enforced, common knowledge) and informal (often dependent on culture, not enforced) rules. Ascriptive Characteristics: Things that you can’t change about yourself (race/family background/gender, etc.) Free Market System: Anyone can compete, the people will decide who advances. Limited government involvement. Income inequality < wealth inequality Income: amount of money earned on a yearly basis minus any debt Wealth: total amount of money held from all assets (stocks, house, etc.) minus debt Stratification: Hierarchy of classes in a society Unfair: People are ranked by class, gender, race, etc. (ascriptive characteristics rather than earned characteristics) Stratification is necessary because of scarcity (the limit of resources in a society, a.k.a. Not EVERYONE can be rich) The more qualities we use to sort people, the more they become embedded into society. INCOME: Top CEO’s average > $25 Million/year Top 25 Investment fund managers on Wall Street average $882 Million! Fortune 500 CEO’s earn 92 times that of their middle managers. Some see wealth inequality as an incentive for the poor to work harder. Progressive Taxation: Tax goes up as the income goes up. Regressive Tax: Tax hurts the poor pore. Culture of Poverty (Lewis): Cultural pattern that encourages poverty as a way of life and makes it seem ridiculous to ever get out. The process of “blaming the victim”. (Ryan ‘76) 1) Pick a social problem 2) Decide how people who suffer from problem are different than everyone else 3) Define these differences as the cause of the problem 4) Respond to the problem by trying to change the individual rather than society Marx Internal Contradiction thought: a society with enough wealth to end poverty give the bulk of money to a small portion of people at the top Cultural Capital: skills, values, attitudes, schooling that increase a person’s chances of success. Single women and at the greatest risk of poverty: Informal Structure (sexism): Women are expected to fill less important jobs Intersection Theory: When multiple social disadvantages combine in one person (a.k.a. Being a hispanic woman trying to enter the workforce) Different Political Structure (regarding poverty): Conservative (Personal responsibility): Poverty is a result of personal failure Overuse of welfare programs leads to dependence from the poor on them Market system Liberal (Society has the responsibility): Society has duty to protect the poor U.S. Economy productive, but allocates funds unequally Increase tax to fund welfare programs and reduce inequality Radical Left View: An overhaul of the economic system is necessary for more equality of wealth Inequality is inevitable given the present system U.S. Child Poverty Rates: 22% of all children are in poverty 38% of all African American children are in poverty 34% of all Hispanic American children are in poverty
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