Explain the difference between open and closed societies. Define the several systems of stratification. Understand how Max Weber and Karl Marx differed in their view of class societies. When we look around the world and through history, we see different types of stratification systems.
John Gowdy writes, "Assumptions about human behaviour that members of market societies believe to be universal, that humans are naturally competitive and acquisitive, and that social stratification is natural, do not apply to many hunter-gatherer peoples.
Original affluent society Anthropologists identify egalitarian cultures as " kinship -oriented," because they appear to value social harmony more than wealth or status.
These cultures are contrasted with economically oriented cultures including states in which status and material wealth are prized, and stratification, competition, and conflict are common. Kinship-oriented cultures actively work to prevent social hierarchies from developing because they believe that such stratification could lead to conflict and instability.
A good example is given by Richard Borshay Lee in his account of the Khoisanwho practice "insulting the meat. The meat itself is then distributed evenly among the entire social group, rather than kept by the hunter.
The level of teasing is proportional to the size of the kill. Lee found this out when he purchased an entire cow as a gift for the group he was living with, and was teased for weeks afterward about it since obtaining that much meat could be interpreted as showing off.
According to David H. Turnerin this arrangement, every person is expected to give everything of any resource they have to any other person who needs or lacks it at the time.
This has the benefit of largely eliminating social problems like theft and relative poverty. While many such variables cut across time and place, the relative weight placed on each variable and specific combinations of these variables will differ from place to place over time.
One task of research is to identify accurate mathematical models that explain how these many variables combine to produce stratification in a given society. Grusky provides a good overview of the historical development of sociological theories of social stratification and a summary of contemporary theories and research in this field.
In general, sociologists recognize that there are no "pure" economic variables, as social factors are integral to economic value. However, the variables posited to affect social stratification can be loosely divided into economic and other social factors.
Economic inequality Strictly quantitative economic variables are more useful to describing social stratification than explaining how social stratification is constituted or maintained.
Income is the most common variable used to describe stratification and associated economic inequality in a society. Social status Social variables, both quantitative and qualitativetypically provide the most explanatory power in causal research regarding social stratification, either as independent variables or as intervening variables.
Three important social variables include genderraceand ethnicitywhich, at the least, have an intervening effect on social status and stratification in most places throughout the world. Some of these variables may have both causal and intervening effects on social status and stratification.
For example, absolute age may cause a low income if one is too young or too old to perform productive work. The social perception of age and its role in the workplace, which may lead to ageismtypically has an intervening effect on employment and income.
Social scientists are sometimes interested in quantifying the degree of economic stratification between different social categories, such as men and women, or workers with different levels of education. An index of stratification has been recently proposed by Zhou for this purpose.
Gender inequality Gender is one of the most pervasive and prevalent social characteristics which people use to make social distinctions between individuals.
Gender distinctions are found in economic- kinship- and caste-based stratification systems. Entire societies may be classified by social scientists according to the rights and privileges afforded to men or women, especially those associated with ownership and inheritance of property.Social-Conflect Approach in regards to Social Stratification.
This argues that stratification provides some people with advantages over others. Karl Marx was the leader of Class Conflict. The essays in this collection, on stratification, organization and the discipline of sociology, all bear upon a general theoretical question: what models of rationality are necessary or suitable to explain individual and collective action in institutional contexts?
Video: Social Stratification: Definition, Theories & Examples Social stratification refers to a system by which a society ranks categories of people in a hierarchy. Let's examine some of the. Social Stratification March 6, I.
a. “the organization of society in which people are ranked according to their wealth or prestige” i. also gender and race b. “a hierarchical structure of society” c. Social differentiation: no ranking Refers to the fact that people have differences ii.
Social stratification can be organized in terms of class, gender, race and ethnicity, age or disability.
Social class is based on the economic differences between groups in terms of income and wealth, possession of material goods, occupation and status. The three-component theory of stratification, more widely known as Weberian stratification or the three class system, was developed by German sociologist Max Weber with class, The Theory of Social and Economic Organization, ed.
Talcott Parsons. New York, NY: Free P.