Social Inequality Lecture Notes 2015
Social Inequality Lecture Notes 2015 SOC:2810
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One Day of Notes
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This 11 page One Day of Notes was uploaded by Juliann Gibson on Wednesday January 21, 2015. The One Day of Notes belongs to SOC:2810 at University of Iowa taught by Jorge Alberto Chavez Rojas in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 277 views. For similar materials see Social Inequality in Sociology at University of Iowa.
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Date Created: 01/21/15
Social lnequality 12115 01212015 Chapter 1 quotquot Pay extra attention to when studying for quizzes and tests Inequalities shape how people live 0 Opportunities for quotbetter lifequot Mental health Life expectancy Economic expansion or stagnation Social forces 0 Systematic social forces creates rich people and poor people based on in uence and power distribution 0 Race ethnicity and gender structured inequalities exist De nitions and Concepts 0 Social differentiation people with distinct qualities and social roles No ranking or hierarchy involved 0 Social inequalitv condition whereby people have unequal access to valued resources and positions in society 0 Social strati cation social inequality is institutionalized Creating a system of social relationships that determines who gets what 0 Ascription when class or strata placement is hereditary o Achievement when placement is due to qualities controlled by individuals Class division and social mobility Class group of individuals with similar positions political and economic interests 0 Classes are based on 0 Occupational structure 0 Authority structure 0 Property structure Class division in the US 0 Upper class families or groups with high property ownership thus high authority too 0 Ex Bill gates very wealthy In most cases the wealthy are wealthy because they were born into it not achieved it 0 Corporate class people with high authority and power in major corporations and government 0 Ex Presidents vice presidents corporate board members etc 0 Middle class people with littler property high to middle positions in occupation and authority 0 Ex Doctor teacher etc wide range 0 Working class little or no property middle to low positions in occupation and authority 0 Ex People who work for minimum wage Lower class no property often unemployed The poor 0 Ex Homeless etc Status and Class 0 Status can be a position in a social structure 0 Ex Student father etc 0 Or it can be a social position generally based on occupational prestige We ll use this de nition Social Mobility 0 De nition o It is a individual or group movement within the class system It can be vertical or horizontal 0 Vertical the movement of individuals up and down the class system 0 Horizontal movement across positions of equal rank 0 Social mobility is a combination of ascription and achievement Which one is greater Strati cation in the world system 0 Modern world system theory considers nations to be ranked in ways similar to the international system of social strati cation Chapter 2 Dimension of Inequality in the US Income and wealth lnedualitv Income and wealth is highly correlated to power and in uence 0 Income money wages periodically received as return from an occupation or investment Wealth accumulated assets such as real estate stocks bonds etc 0 Income is distributed unequally in the US but wealth is even more unequal lncome lnedualitv 0 White families 0 114 less than 15000 dollarsyear o 41 income of 200000 or more 0 black families 0 234 less than 15000 dollarsyear o 12 incomes of 200000 or more 0 Hispanic families 0 165 less than 15000 dollarsyear o 17 income of 200000 or more 0 Asian families 0 117 less than 15000 dollarsyear o 77 income of 200000 or more Table 22 0 The lowest 20 of households receive 34 of aggregate income 0 The highest 20 of households receive 504 of aggregate income Also see table 23 The CEO s case 0 The gap between the average worker s pay and the top corporate executive went from o 40 to 1 in 1990 to o 419 to 1 in 1998 0 read page 25 about bonuses received b the main corporations CEOs Gini Index 0 Name after Italian statistician Corrado Gini The Gini coefficient is a measure of the inequality of a distribution 0 A value of 00 expressing complete equality and a value of 10 maximal inequality one person or family has all the income see gure 22 Comparative Income Inequality 0 See tables 24 and 25 0 By 1980 the US had the highest income inequality among all industrial nations 0 This fact is still holds since then 0 See table 26 0 CEO salaries compared to other countries and pay gap between average worker and CEO Wealthy Inequality See table 27 0 The wealthiest 20 of Americans hold over 84 of the wealth in 2004 o The lowest 20 in terms of wealth show a negative wealth 05 Comparative Wealth Inequalitv See table 210 0 The us is the second highest at 70 of wealth held by the top 10 of Americans the highest is Switzerland with 71 o The rest of industrialized countries range from 3959 Inequalitv of basic Necessities 0 Health inequalities Good health is also unequally distributed 0 There are two opposing principles of health distribution 1 pricinq mechanism those who can afford it get it OR 2 principle of need those in greatest need get it rst 0 the distribution of health care in the US is based more on th ability to pay 0 generally in Medicare and Medicaid In 1965 these programs were created 0 Medicaid does not pay for all kinds of medical needs 0 Doctors accepting Medicaid receive 80 of standard fee 0 Studies show that this medical care is of lower quality compared to the one received by the more af uent Stories of Michael and David 0 Michael from poor African American family 0 David Born into rich white family and inherited a lot of money CONTINUED 0 In 2000 the WHO ranked the US health care system in the 37th position among 191 other nations Costa Rica was 36th and Cuba was 39th 0 Reasons Political Inequalities Outcomes of political process that favor some class interests more than others 0 Those on top receive more of the services or outputs provided by government agencies 0 However the bene ts of people on the bottom distribution are the ones most likely to be cut back in time of government crisis Taxes Tax policies are meant that those most able to pay would pay more taxes progressive taxation 0 80 of taxes revenues come from individuals income taxes and SS deducUons 0 See table 212 C 0 Individuals income taxes have been increasing while corporate taxes have decreasing 0 See table 212 0 The biggest bene ciaries of tax breaks have been large corporations Government Services oWelfare versus Wealthfa re oln addition to providing welfare for the poor the federal government provides subsidies to many industries lt can be argued that government services that help the wealthy and corporations also help the general public lf we nd that the wealthy has more resources to in uence government policies we must recognize that it is their interest that are probably most served What is another important element that is subject to inequality in the 0 Answer EDUCATION Political Taxes health care Extreme wealth and inequality is economically inef cient oConsolidation of so much wealth and capital in so few hands is inef cient because it depresses demand There is a limit to how many luxury yachts a person could want or own Wages in many countries have barely risen in real terms for many years Extreme Wealth and Inequality is politically corrosive money equals power this power can be exercised legally with hundreds of millions spent each year on lobbying politicians or illegitimately with money used to corrupt the political process Extreme Wealth and inequality is social divisive Extreme wealth and inequality undermines societies It leads to far less social mobility If you are born poor in a very unequal society you are much more likely to end your life in poverty 0 Social mobility has fallen rapidly in many countries as inequality has gmwn 0 Those from elites are much more likely to end up in political of ce or other positions of power further entrenching inequality Social Strati cation in Human Societies 0 We live in a world with extensive inequality 0 We also perceive that inequality has been present throughout history Questions 0 Have these inequalities always been so great o Is our society more unequal than others 0 Will it always be so 0 the rst human beings hominids appeared about 4 million years ago 0 Human beings began forming societies only about10000 years ago Neolithic revolution 0 Human beings are unique in the systematic coercion of the nonkin in cooperative efforts to exploit others and creating inequality among their own kind The Neolithic Revolution 0 After many years of hunting and gathering humans began settling down to an agricultural life 0 After few thousands of years large cities began emerging and a new division of labor appeared More technical devices were invented giving raise to the industrial age 0 With the industrial age the history of strati cation inequality elites and exploitation began The process of civilization was also one of enslavement Varieties of Human Strati cation System 0 ve basic characteristics of strati cation systems 1 normativer closed versus open divisions social mobility 2 actual method of class placement ascription or achievement 3 the major method of legitimating tradition legal religious etc 4 predominant form of inequality honor economic militarypolitical 5 comparative level of inequality low high Some Explanations Normative refers to norms or values prescribing open versus closed rankings 0 Closed strati cation ranking based on ascribed status Vertical mobility may be prohibited Primitive Communal Societies Economy based on hunting and gathering Accumulation of material possessions was generally impossible Goods and food were usually divided more or less equally This type of society may have chiefs medicine men or shamans who have more in uence or power within the tribe 0 Closed or open 0 Placement 0 Method of legitimation Slavery o This form of inequality generally emerged after human beings settled down in agricultural communities o It is an economic relationship the ownership of human beings The position of slave has been acquired through birth military defeat debt or commercial trade o In ancient slave societies freedom could be purchased or acquired by the slave 0 Closed or open slaveryclosed o Placement 0 Method of legitimation slavery at the time was legal Caste o It is xed arrangement of strata o Determined by birth and is lifelong Ascribed status 0 No matter how much a person may accomplish in life 0 Marriage only within their own group 0 Closed or open closed society 0 Placement 0 Method of legitimation tradition Estate or Feudal Land ownership determine position o It was a combination of military and economic power 0 Three estates were de ned by law 0 The priestly class rst estate 0 The nobility second estate 0 Commoners artisans merchants and peasants Hereditary in nature but some kind of mobility is present 0 Closed or open closed 0 Placement 0 Method of legitimation legal sum of info page 63 in text book Class 0 The industrial revolution shaped this new system of strati cation Social strati cation is based on individual achievement 0 Occupation determines position 0 Based on money or material possession More opportunity for movement social mobility 0 Closed or open open 0 Placement 0 Method of legitimation economic Considering the give types of strati cation systems overall inequality ranges from 0 Very low Primitive communal societies 0 Medium level Class or industrial societies 0 High level Slave caste and estate societies
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