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Feng Hao

4/26/14
Stratification Definitions
Social Stratification describes the power and economic rewards in the system of social
standing in the society. When people know their own social standing, people are in a social
stratification. So people need to know which social class they belong to. The four systems are
slavery, caste, estates, and social class. Slavery is closed and ascribed and is where people that
are property. An example is slavery before the Civil War. Caste is closed and ascribed and is the
born rank that is hard to change. An example is Hinduism where they are Brahman, Kshatriya,
Yaishya and Shudra. Estates is open and is achieved status. It is stratification where workers
leased the land from nobles for protection. An example is people can sell food to make money
on land and change to rich people. Social Class is open and is achieved status. It is peoples social
standing is based on their economic position and influence social mobility. An example is
Obama have a high social class because he is the president of the United States.
Means of production are the items that control production such as land and machines.
The bourgeoisie are people who control the means of production. The proletariat is workers
that do not have the means of production. Class consciousness is where workers grouping up
and wanting change. Dominant ideology is the main idea in the society. For example,
democracy in the United States is the dominant ideology. False consciousness is where peoples
thinking does not mean what the real situation is. For example, workers who get a $1 raise
think that they are rich people now.
For Weber, class is a group of people who have the same economic resources. An
example is that I own a business so I am in the same class as other people who own the same
business. Status group is a group that has the same perceived importance. An example is that
Harvard students have the more importance than a high school student. Party is where a group
can do the same goal. An example is a couple that works harder to bring more happiness to the
family. The differences between Marx and Weber is that Marx talks more about production and
ownership while Weber talks about peoples status and power is multidimensional.
Cultural capital is linked to class differences because based on class differences people
might have different cultural capital. Cultural capital is linked to power differences because
people can share the cultural capital with other people to create power. For example, you go to
college so that you can have better cultural capital so that you can get power from your job.
When you go to college, you can gain better cultural capital so that you can get more materials,
social and cultural resources because college offers all of this. By having good cultural capital I
can get a good job so that I can get better attire, vacations, housing, and food and sport.