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

Is inequality 'just an excuse' for personal failure?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Is inequality 'just an excuse' for personal failure? This essay will consider the question, 'Is inequality 'just an excuse' for personal failure?' first by looking at the intended meaning of the question itself and possible interpretations of it. The essay will then move on to consider different arguments and opinions on the matter to draw a sound conclusion in order to answer the question. Inequality is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as 'a lack of equality' which of course means, as one might expect, the definition and indeed existence of equality are paramount to that of inequality. The definition of equality is 'the state of being equal' in turn the definition of equal is 'evenly balanced'. This indicates that if two things are equal they can be considered to be the same and therefore two unequal things are not the same. The question is examining whether people who are different from the majority in someway are disadvantaged or if they would be unjustified to claim so. In the practical situation of looking at inequality amongst people there are of course countless criteria which could be considered; race, gender, economic situation or class and age just to name a few. ...read more.

Middle

then available to look after the children so no or only a part time income becomes the norm amongst single parent families with little opportunity to increase this. Since the Thatcher government of the 1980's it has been the principal view that it is the fault of the poor themselves that they are poor. Thatcher introduced a policy of Laissez faire by which state intervention was reduced, by privatising many public sector industries, such as the railways. Also taxes for the wealthy were cut to encourage economic growth; however the benefits of this were not seen in traditional working class jobs, further widening the gap between the poor and the rest of society. (Giddens 1990) The Meritocratic values of the masses lead to the misguided opinion that jobs are assigned on ability alone which obviously leads to the conclusion that the reason that the poor are not in well paid jobs is because they would not be able to do the job. As one's class is a key factor in determining one's life chances it is difficult for the children born into poverty not to be caught in the same situation as their parents; they do not have the same possibilities as their wealthier counterparts. ...read more.

Conclusion

It is unrealistic to say that it would be impossible for someone in poverty to get themselves out of it; the class system in Britain is very fluid in comparison to other social stratifications. At the same time one must acknowledge that inequality inevitably leads to unequal opportunities, meaning that it is easier for some than others. If the opportunities available to everyone were made equal it would be the responsibility of the individual to succeed or indeed fail in life. In this society the value that is placed on wealth means that one is automatically disadvantaged simply by not having it. The essay aimed to look at and perhaps answer the title question. It is accepted that the issue has been massively over simplified and it could be argued as a result not even touch upon however the question itself is unclear and would never have a single answer. Any individual could and probably would answer both yes and no as success in most areas of life is a complex combination of ability, dedication, opportunity and chance. Inequality is definitely more than just an excuse for personal failure but responsibility does need to be accepted by the individual. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Sociology 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 GCSE Sociology essays

  1. Gender Capital ? - Bourdieu and Gender Inequality

    principle is not given systematic treatment throughout Bourdieu's work because gender division is seen as universal and natural...' (McCall, 1992:851). However, why is it that women still appear to favour the 'caring' industries, and young girls favour language and humanity courses while the boys choose science and mathematics?

  2. Sociology - Social Inequality

    The aims of the research are to determine the amount of social inequality depending on the issues which enclose it. I also aim to establish an idea of who is affected mostly and how. My final aim is to investigate on the sociologists explanations towards social inequality and if any of them then are alike to my set of results.

  1. Children are born to succeed or fail

    A gender role is the pattern of behaviour and activity which society expects from individuals of either sex-how a boy/man or girl/woman should behave in society. Gender roles may sometimes be referred to as sex roles. 1 We gender stereotype in many different ways.

  2. Homophobia: a Definition

    Both heterosexually and homosexually oriented boys are socialized into these irrational feelings about "queers" before they have established their own self-perceived sexual identities. Heterosexually-oriented boys express these feelings by being hostile toward (real or suspected) gays. Homosexually-oriented boys do the same thing initially, but when they begin to recognize that

  1. Examine the impact of the failure of the 1863 Uprising upon Polish Society.

    Many more men from various ranks within in Polish society soon joined them, which meant that in total more than ten thousand men had rallied around the revolutionary banner. The actual uprising also took a different front; it was fought using guerrilla warfare in the countryside, instead of as a full on attack.

  2. Hypothesis: Children are born to succeed or fail

    A culture contains within it the way of life, customs and traditions of the people following it. A culture is formed around three corner stones. These are: Social Organisation: the family is basic unit of a social organisation. It maintains traditions and beliefs and hence acts as a major component in balancing social structure.

  1. Market Failure With De-Merit Goods

    Since a free market system is run on the principle that every body should look after their own self-interest, more would be supplied than what is beneficial to society. The good is "OVER-SUPPLIED". If social costs were taken into account the amount would be at the point where the social costs curve and the private benefit curve crossed.

  2. Development and Inequality Essay

    Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was the president of the United States at the time, proposed his plan the 'New Deal' to bring economic relief, recovery and reform. This package included programs that put American citizens back to work, projects that gave financial security for the elderly, and programs which assisted impoverished Americans to pay for medicine and food.

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