Social cleavages SOC315 - What are the main social...

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What are the main social cleavages that interest political scientists? Which have contributed to your views? "Political parties do not merely reflect social divisions, they actively construct them" (de Leon, Desai, & Tugal, 2009). According to Michael Roskin (2009), the social cleavages that political scientists are: "social class, geographic region, religion, and Urban-Rural philosophies" (p. 11). In the United States, age, gender and occupation are political factors. As for the social class, for example, "Karl Marx held that the middle- and upper- class people were conservative; working-class people were progressive or radical" (Rosking, 2009, p. 11). Manza and Brooks (2003) state in their book, Social Cleavages and Political Change: Voter Alignments and U.S. Party Coalition, that "for too long analysts have employed simplistic two-class models (e.g. blue collar versus white collar) of class structure in their research. Such a representation of class structure fails to capture many recent changes and thus leads researchers to underestimate the political effects of class" (p.3).
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