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New soc essays week 1_StudyGuide

New soc essays week 1_StudyGuide - Study Questions Soc 2208...

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Study Questions, Soc 2208 / DSoc 2209 Week 1: Forms and Sources of Stratification 1. Modern industrial societies are characterized by egalitarian ideologies and, at the same time, by substantial and often increasing inequality (e.g., in income). What are some of the ways in which inequality is made more palatable to the public and/or otherwise reconciled with egalitarian values? - Although there has been an increase in inequality in terms of income and economic assets, there has been a decrease in inequality in other important spheres of society: Basic human rights have increased which has led to universal equality of human rights Civil rights have also made vast improvements More married women are working which is an improvement for females in the workplace dual earners families rise to the top of the income distribution, inequality in households that only have one workers versus those with 2 People tend to think that there is less inequality in terms of status and prestige than in the past but this is difficult to measure - Poverty rate has decreased over time - People have egalitarian beliefs and ideals, believe that there should be a certain minimum standard that all people are provided. However, American people also care about the functioning of the market society and are willing to accept inequality even if it means increasing inequality. American people find inequality more palatable if it accompanies functioning markets. Top percentages of income have a disproportionate amount of share of total wealthy in U.S. Move towards a service sector and away from a manufacturing/industrial sector: more jobs in the service sector and these jobs don’t pay as well (more people are earning low wages) Skill-biased technological change: demand for educated workforce has not kept up with the supply, increased demand for unskilled labor Decline of unions: unions are a way for working class to gain power and increase their wages but the presence of unions has declined Decline in real value of the minimum wage Fall of socialism and the demise of the welfare state which were far more egalitarian than U.S. society people now favor free markets - Grusky & Szelenyi
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