Study Guide - Culture of poverty - the thesis popularized...

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Culture of poverty - the thesis popularized by Oscar Lewis, that poverty is not the result of  individual inadequacies, but is instead the outcome of a larger social and cultural  atmosphere into which successive generations of children are socialized. The culture of  poverty refers to the values, beliefs, lifestyles, habits and traditions that are common among  people living under conditions of material deprivations. Structural Arguments of why poverty exists Take away all resources from people in a given area and they will act the same Ex. Institutional racism, access to education Living in a poor neighborhood with a poorly funded school Parents can’t afford college education Focus more from the conflict side Idea that Structural forces keep people down “Poverty line is so low that the people who are just above it can’t get aid.” Cultural Arguments of why poverty exists  There are common cultural attributes learned in poverty that perpetuate the situation Learning that education is not valuable perpetuates poor education Blaming the people in poverty for why poverty exists Poverty Patterns Absolute Poverty Not having the minimal requirements (e.g. adequate food, shelter, and clothing) to  sustain a reasonably healthy life. Relative Poverty: Living at standards lower than the majority of people in a given society. Average US Income is around $40,000 That would be highly rich in Africa Children of the Great Depression Sociological study lead by a life-course researcher named Glen Elder Found that people who were children during the Great Depression talked mostly  about what they lost. Found differences in how people reacted depending on where they were when it  started. Found that those living close to the poverty line weren’t as affected by the  depression than those who had money. The poorer people actually felt more helped from the government.
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Social Class Definition: Any group of people who share a similar economic position in society based on their wealth and income Upper class: a social class broadly composed of the more affluential members of society
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This note was uploaded on 04/13/2008 for the course SOC 302 taught by Professor Langenkamp during the Spring '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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Study Guide - Culture of poverty - the thesis popularized...

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