• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How is Webers view of the class structure different to Marxist theory?

Extracts from this document...


Nishtar Hussain How is Weber?s view of the class structure different to Marxist theory? In our contemporary society, the definition of ?class? has been a widely, disputed matter. There have been two main theories and explanations of ?class?, they describe what factors determine social class as well as what it would mean society. The two predominant classifications are by Karl Marx and Max Weber. In this essay I plan to examine these two theories of class and how their notions differ from one another. Karl Marx?s philosophy of ?class? was that there were two characterisations of social class, the ruling class and the lower, subject class. Marx defined these two classifications as the ?bourgeoisie? and the ?proletariat? or in much simpler terms ?capitalists? and the ?working-class?. Sociologist Tony Bilton (1996) explained that Marxist theory outlined that the bourgeoisie use a mode of production in the form of capitalism to suppress the proletariat (working class). ...read more.


This may be epitomised by Marx?s theory of the nature of ownership and production in a capitalist society. To summarise from this Marx?s theory overall outlines that an individual?s relationship to the means of production, defines their social class mutually within the workplace and in society. Max Weber has a different approach on social stratification; he does have this mutual understanding with Marx?s idea that social inequality is the inevitable result of class relations between two groups of people. As having mentioned already, the bourgeoisie hold the means of production and the proletariat own nothing, as a result of this, one class (bourgeoisie) have the ability to dominate the other. On the contrary, Weber does not agree to an extent that this division is applicable to everyday society. He believed that the social stratification and inequality are contingent on the classification of three categories; class, status and party. ...read more.


The final category is ?party?, this term is associated with organisations in which the individual is part of, in contrast to communities or groups, they are involved in striving for a goal in an intentional manner. They are connections of people that attempt to influence social action. Weber specified that a party should consist of three major elements, i.e. it should develop a rational structure and formal organisation and employ administrative staff. To conclude from this; the most significant difference is obviously how each of the sociologist perceives class, the Webarian theory focusses on status as well as other social factor which could come into place, such as; occupation, education, culture (popular or high) which influence social inequality. Whereas, the Marxist theory concludes that economic status and proprietorship are much more significant. Also to take into consideration would be the similarities, the two sociologists do agree upon the division between the wealthy & the poor, as well as the complexity of moving in and out of the class structure. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Sociological Differentiation & Stratification essays

  1. Sociological theories and Healthcare.

    39% in women aged 40-49 years; by 36% in women aged 50-64; by 36% in women aged 65-69; by 33% in women aged 15-39; and by 17% in women over 70. The reduction in breast cancer mortality rates is likely to have several different causes including screening, increasing specialisation of care and the widespread adoption of tamoxifen treatment since 1992.

  2. Changes in the social structure of education and its impact on class and gender ...

    Measures such as uniforms, codes of conduct and home-school agreements were designed to promote social solidarity. -5- With these measures in place why then is it still the case that working class children have lower educational achievements than middle class children?


    fast food outlets and, increasingly, middle range restaurants; and in the expanding demand for a wide range of consumer goods ranging from clothing, electrical and electronic goods, and cars, to tourist locales, and theme parks - all of which cater to the demand for fashions of distinction which will serve

  2. Should we assume that stratification is natural and therefore inevitable? Is class merely about ...

    It is considered that women does not exist because they don?t have their equal say in the society as a result there is almost no society in the world which we can say that it has women right in every aspect of social life.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work