Intro to sociology, note set 4
Intro to sociology, note set 4 SOC 1004
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This 1 page Class Notes was uploaded by Thomas Salazar on Sunday October 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOC 1004 at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University taught by Neal King in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 26 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Sociology in Sociology at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
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Date Created: 10/09/16
Note Set #4 Intro to Sociology INEQUALITY Marxist Explanation [Karl Marx, 1818-1883] – Conflict Theory o Inequality is produced by individuals’ relations to the means of production in a society o Believed that all social inequality could be derived from one basic mechanism, which was the characteristic of the economy Who owns, who benefits, who profits? Capitalism: an “owner-worker” society defined by two features; o Means of production (MoP) are overwhelmingly privately owned o Workers are paid wages in exchange for labor Marx’s beliefs: o There is one basic mechanism of social inequality from which all are derived o The MoP are all the physical means through which goods and services are provided o The economy is the heart of inequality The most important part is the social relations within the economy Who owns the MoP? MARX SOCIAL CLASSES DO YOU BUY LABOR OF OTHERS YES NO DO YOU OWN YES Bourgeoisie Petty-bourgeoisie MEANS OF PRODUCTION NO ~ Proletariat The owner-worker relationship is central, and all other relationships are “epiphenomenal” o Religion, government, family, education, etc… “The state is the executive committee of the bourgeoisie.” The government exists to safeguard the interest of the owner class “Religion is the opiate of the masses.” Don’t worry about the daily grind, “earthly” equality is not the true reward Class Conflict o Surplus value – after subtracting the costs of producing and maintaining labor, whatever is left over is surplus o Exploitation – the higher well-being of one party depends on the lower well-being of another party Not all inequality is due to exploitation, nor is all of it even unfair or bad However in an exploitative system, the basic economic interests of each class are fundamentally opposed: for the rich to be rich, the poor must be poor
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