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sociology midterm chapter 7
Terms in this set (30)
the hierarchical organization of a society into groups with unequal levels of power, prestige, or resources
a condition in which no differences in wealth, power, prestige, or status based on nonnatural conventions exist
a two-directional relationship, following a pattern in which an original statement or thesis is countered with an antithesis, leading to a conclusion that unites the strengths of the original position and the counterarguments.
a notion of history that privileges conflict over economic, material resources as the central struggle and driver of change in society.
a theory in which society's many parts—institutions, norms, traditions, and so on—mesh to produce a stable, working whole that evolves over time. Best embodied by Talcott Parsons.
equality of opportunity
Everyone plays by the same rules
a society of commerce (modern capitalist society, for example) in which the maximization of profit is the primary business incentive.
equality of condition
Everyone has the same starting point (+ plays by the same rules)
equality of outcome
Everyone gets the same rewards (regardless of starting point, opportunities, or contributions)
free rider problem
the notion that when more than one person is responsible for getting something done, the incentive is for each individual to shirk responsibility and hope others will pull the extra weight.
legal/political distinctions; hereditary; little to no mobility
religious/cultural distinctions; hereditary; little to no mobility
economic distinctions; based on roles in the production process, which are sometimes achieved rather than ascribed/inherited; some mobility
the capitalist class
[Weber] distinctions based on social prestige; co-exists with and closely intertwined with a class system
contradictory class locations
the idea that people can occupy locations in the class structure that fall between the two "pure" classes
elite-mass dichotomy system
a system of stratification that has a governing elite, a few leaders who broadly hold power in society
a society where status and mobility are based on individual attributes, ability, and achievement.
General term used by social scientists to refer to an individual's position in the social and economic order, according to multiple overlapping dimensions (income, wealth, education, job prestige, etc.) [Note: not the same and more general than Weber's idea of social status]
Inflow of money during a specified period of time (e.g., one year)
- Net worth (value of assets minus debts)
- Accumulated this year + last year + the year before that...+ sometimes in previous generations
- Always much more unequal than income
economic elite/those at the top of the economic hierarchy; often implies access to at least some income not generated by employment ("leisure class")
non-manual, service-sector jobs; salaried; broad generic term in the US, often with cultural as much as economic connotations
manual jobs; hourly; low-end service jobs?
has an official, government definition (income < $26,500 for a family of four in 2021), but sometimes also just implies those at the bottom of the economic hierarchy; social and economic deprivation and exclusion
movement between different positions within a stratification system; between or within generations; horizontal or vertical
results from changes in the economy, such as the expansion of high-tech jobs in the past few decades or the disappearance of factory jobs since the 1970s; can result in upward mobility without downward mobility and vice versa
fluidity in the system of stratification; people exchange positions: when one person is upwardly mobile then another is downwardly mobile
research tradition that attempts to predict SES and understand the relationship among its elements (for example: how does education affect occupation?) and mobility across generations
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