Sociology in Our Times Study Set 4
Quiz 7 :
Class and Stratification in the United States
As per the Sociologist, Max Weber, the social groups can be stratified based on three major dimensions i.e. wealth, prestige and power. An individual's position with respect to these dimensions determines his or her life chances. Better life chances provide opportunity for the individual to gain wealth, prestige and power. The Television celebrities become rich by first being famous with their performance and a primal talent. When they have high audience ranking, they demand higher fees for appearance in the shows. In Weber's model of social stratification, the celebrities earn prestige through fame, respect, honor and esteem first through performance. Later, they accumulate wealth and power.
Employment is an economic activity based on the limited resources of the enterprises or governments. There are three principles on which employment is provided to the citizens' i.e. Meritocracy, need based and affirmative action. • Meritocracy proposes that employment should be provided for those who have the right ability and talent to perform on the job. • In need based employment approach, the financial needs of the group are gauged for providing employment. People who need to sustain and are in dire need of an income are provided with the employment. • Affirmative action is meant to include the marginalized and the minority communities in the economy. Because a typical society hosts diverse kind of people, the principles of meritocracy, need based employment and affirmative action must be spread appropriately. The proportion for sharing the employment approach should match the demographics of the region. For example, if there are more talented people in the community, the employment must be based on the meritocracy. On the other hand, if people are in penury, the employment may be provided to them irrespective of their merits.
As the disparity of income increases in the United States among its citizens, the gap between the rich and poor widens leading to the following outcomes. • As the income disparity increases, the poverty conditions become intense, and as a result, the national competitiveness may deteriorate. • Lack of education and employment, which are related to income generation, shall lead to an increase in crime rates. • Unequal distribution of wealth may cause social unrest and political upheaval in the form of revolutions. • When households become poorer, it may lead to disintegration of family. Children from disintegrated families are likely to get attracted towards terrorism and drug peddling.