Comer added to it in 1978 ‘Social Class implies having or not having the following: individual rights, privileges, rower, rights over others, authority, life style choices, etc. “(Comer, 1978) 2) Racial and Ethnic Stratification: Hierarchy based upon race, religion, national origin, etc. Race is basically a distinguishing genetic characteristics resulting in physical characteristics. Whereas, ethnicity is a condition of being culturally rather than physically distinctive. ) Gender: It generally deviates from biological distinction to sociological distinction in the form of masculine and feminine. One is born male or female but is stratified as man or woman later on. Karl Marx in his work ‘Dads Capital’ volume – 3 had provided the general classification that after the primitive communist society all succeeding societies have been class societies. ‘The haves are dominant and have notes are subordinated. Thus, the class system necessarily involves inequality, exploitation and the potential for conflict” (Marx, 1894).
Emilee Druthers along with Parsons and Morton have seen this stratification in different ways. They advocated structural functionalism and maintained that every organ of the society is important just like every part of body for the smooth functioning of society. Hypothesis: i. What role has class, race and gender played in individual’s life? How it get stratified? Ii. Which sociological perspective gets associated with such stratification? What are the bases for particular perspective? Iii. How interview benefits as a research methodology?
Objective: i. Interview two different individuals regarding their position in society. Ii. Identify each person’s class, race and gender. Iii. What role has class, race and gender played in their lives? How this stratifies as playing role? Iv. Apply one of the sociological perspectives to the individual’s lives. Methodology and Descriptive Results Participants: Individual-I – Class: Low-income; Race – African-American; Gender – Woman. Individual – 2 -? Class: High-income; Race – American; Gender – Man.
Role of Class, Racial and Gender Stresses in the Stratification: Class, Race and Gender bias have been identified by an author as key factor in Social Stratification: The woman in America is expected to be beautiful in an ornamental way, she did not work for a living and was ‘chaste’, ‘pious’ and married. The colored women were an obsolete anti-thesis of this image – she was not ornamental ND according to the aesthetics of the country she was not beautiful. Most of African-American women had to work for a living. (Birth, Josh, June, 2009, P. 8) Such ideology referred by Toni Morrison in “The Bluest Eye”, has been exemplified in the process of interview. African-American woman viewed her life as being dominated by racial and gender biases. They are victimized by racism, sexism and classicism, both from the white world and their own men. Class exploitation is perhaps the worst and most pressing source of oppression of colored people in White America. Importance of class issue lies in its link to capitalism, the system which divide classes into two classes: haves i. . , masters and have notes i. E. , slaves. The African-American woman interviewed was working in plantation farm as laborer. One important thing that was noticed during the procedure in addition to racism, classicism and sexism, African-American women are also scholarly neglected. Other person interviewed enjoyed every kind of opportunity and thus, can be put under the heading of Monopoly Class. Hence, a kind of hierarchy is created in which White American Male dominates and is subordinated by African-American Women.
Victims of Classicism, Racism and Sexism know the consequences of social stratification, but on the other hand privileged ones were unaware of any social stratification. Stratification and Conflict: Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison in her Nobel prize lecture said, “Tell us what it is to be a women so that we may know what it is to be a man. What moves at the margin? What it is to have no homes in this place? To be set adrift from the one you knew. What it is to live at the edge of towns that cannot bear our company? ” (Morrison, Karen, 1993).
This patrons tragic conditions of Colored Americans in racist America. African-American primary obstacle is racism and gender bias adds upon to it. In understanding Conflict Theory, Social Classes division and competition plays an vital role. Here are few primary assumptions of Modern Conflict Theory: 1. Competition: Competition over limited resources is primary to all social relationships. Competition rather than consensus characterizes human relationships. 2. Structural Inequality: All Social Structures have inequality in rewards and power. 3.
Revolution or Reforms: Conflict between classes results in changes more often than adaptations. Conflict Theory was further elaborated after Industrial Revolution in Europe by Karl Marx, Max Weber and various other Sociologists. Karl Marx – Class and Conflict : Karl Marx was the direct product of the legacy of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. His principles were based upon Socio-Economic Justice, where he believed that – “From each according to his ability to each according to his need”. Mar’s view on social stratification is based upon his observations post Industrial Revolution in
Europe. He clearly saw a class division between the Capitalists(i. E. Haves or owners of Means of Production. ) and the Workers(i. E. , Have Notes or Proletariat). As a result separation and conflict was inevitable. He saw Intellectual Progress and Material Progress has not been consistent with distribution of goods or access to it. Max Weber – Class, Status, Power and Emotion: Max Weber has redefined and refined Mar’s Conflict theory. He instigated that more than one conflict over property existed at a time between Haves and Have Notes as maintained by Karl Marx.
Weber included further ‘Emotion’ as other aspect of Conflict. Feminist Conflict Theory: Position of women has been explained by feminists using conflict theory. Likes of Simons De Behavior have advocated against the Gender Bias created in the society. Feminist Conflict Theorists argue about the traditional oppression Of Women in the society to provide men, social, power and Status benefits. Conclusion Soon after Industrial Revolution there was inequality simply based upon class. As the society progressed and looked for its solution two more biases came into being.
In the procedure of interview it was noted that primary obstacle for African-American Women lies into Racism and Sexism, ultimately culminating into class bias. As the opportunities are limited progress stalls at some or the other point. These systems of societal and psychological oppression have adversely impacted lives of under privileged communities in SAC. There were benefits of using interview as a research methodology, on account of which untouched biases can also be learned. For example, Gender in one’s own race can become a means of oppression; hence the fact Of laterality among one community is also lost.
Further, interviewing gives us the insight into the actual cause of class exploitation. Along with the benefits of interview method there are several limitations associated to it. Sample size could be inappropriate and can give illusionary results. For instance, African- American women in lot many cases are at the top of Class structure, and hence theory of exploitation and inequality on the basis of Class becomes unwarranted. Further, Conflict arising of the class, race and gender bias can be solved using the approach of structural functionalism.