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Attempt any TWO questions.All questions carry equal marksNAME: HARIS YOUNUSREG NO 53321Question 1(10 marks)Read the following passage and answer the questions that follow:A tourist visiting Japan may at first experience a bit of a culture shock after noticing the degreeto which everything in Japanese life is ranked: corporations, universities, even educationalprograms. These rankings are widely reported and accepted. Moreover, the ratings shape day today social interaction: Japanese find is difficult to sit, talk or eat together unless the relativerankings of those present have been established, often through the practice ofmeishi(theexchange of business cards).The apparent pre-occupation with ranking and formality suggests an exceptional degree ofstratification. Yet researchers have determined that Japan’s level if income inequality is amongthe lowest of major industrial societies. The pay gap between Japan’s top corporate executivesand the nation’s lowest-paid workers is about 8 to 1; the comparable figure for the United Stateswould be 37 to 1.One factor that works against inequality is that Japan is rather homogenous – certainly whencompared with the United States – in terms of race, ethnicity, nationality, and language. Japan’spopulation is 98% percent Japanese. Still, there is discrimination against the nation’s Chineseand Korean minorities, and the Burkaumin, a low-status subculture, encounter extensiveprejudice.Perhaps, the most pervasive form of inequality in Japan today is gender discrimination. Overall,women earn only about 64 percent of men’s wages. Fewer than 10 percent of Japanese managersare female – a ratio that is one of the lowest in the world. Even in developing countries, womenare twice as likely to be managers as women in Japan.In 1985, Japan’s parliament – at the time, 97 percent male – passed an Equal Employment billthat encourages employers to end sex determination in hiring, assignment and promotionpolicies. However, feminist organizations were dissatisfied because the law lacked strongsanctions. In a landmark ruling issued in 1996, a Japanese court for the first time held anemployer liable for denying promotions due to sex discrimination.Progress has also been made in terms of public opinion. In 1987, 43 percent of Japanese agreedthat married women should stay home, but by 2000, the proportion had dropped to 25 percent.On the political front, Japanese women have made progress but remain underrepresented. In a
study of women in government around the world, Japan ranked near the bottom of the countriesstudied, with only 7 percent of its national legislators being female.Answer the following questions (each question carries 2.5 marks):1.What do you understand by the term social stratification? How would you describe thesystem of social stratification in Japan?

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Term
Spring
Professor
professor_unknown
Tags
Sociology, preindustrial societies

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