● Tommy for instance liked to fight and steal and ended up going to jail for murder Study Guide: 32-Loewen – “The Land of Opportunity.” (Chapter 31 in 6th edition) There are 8 general topics/questions in this study guide. Topics appear in bold: In one sentence, what is the author attempting to show? ● That other social classes are ignorant to the lower classes and that lower classes have it much harder not just because of income but because of prejudice and bias from other social classes. Why does the author feel this research is necessary? What data sources does he use? What did Woodrow Wilson say about social class and education? ● “We want one class of persons to have a liberal education, and we want another class of persons, a very much larger class of necessity in every society, to forgo the privilege of a liberal education and fit themselves to perform difficult manual tasks.” Loewen says “Social class is probably the single most important variable in society.” What are two pieces of evidence does he produce to support this… a.…regarding infant health (two pieces of evidence)? ● Affluent expectant mothers are more likely to give prenatal care ● Rich babies come out weighing more than poor babies b.…regarding socialization (2)? ● Social class determines how other social classes think of each other ● c.…regarding education (2)? ● Teachers expect a certain behavior/attitude from poor children ● Only expect rich kids to excel Why do teachers and textbooks avoid discussing social class? Loewen states that American history courses “(justify) rather than explain the present.” In your own words, explain what he means by this.
Why is it a problem to stress that almost everyone is middle class? Sample questions from Loewen:: James Loewen’s primary research strategy was a. a survey of first year college students. b. analysis of artifacts (i.e., history textbooks). (YES) c. the use of existing statistics. d. participant observation. According to James Loewen, the stress on how most people in the United States are middle class is particularly problematic because a. social class has ceased to be a variable that predicts important social factors. b. textbooks tend to overplay the importance of class conflict in American history. c. the proportion of households earning middle-class incomes has fallen steadily since 1967. d. it turns attention from matters that are more important than social class. With which of the following statements would James Loewen disagree? a. Middle class students, especially, know little about how the American class structure works. b. School teachers avoid talking about social class and its effects simply because they are ignorant about its importance. (YES) c. Publishers shy away from mentioning social class in history textbooks owing to a fear of being labeled Marxist. d. Equality of opportunity is an important part of U.S. ideology.
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- Spring '08
- Sociology, Saints, James Loewen