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

Social stratification.

Extracts from this document...


The term social stratification refers to, "the division of society into layers, these layers are distinguished by unequal rewards and life chances."(Brown K 2000) Sociologists use the term to refer to the structure of society and the way in which people are classified. Social classification is a method of grouping individuals who have similar wealth, income and occupation. There are many ways people can be divided into groups. In years gone by a person's gender would have been a major way of classifying people and could dictate their position in society. Men were traditionally classed as the main earners and a women's role was to raise children and look after the household. A person's position in society according to their age is viewed differently by other cultures. In industry societies where industry is technology based and advancing forward, older people are not as valued as young or middle aged professionals. Whereas in agricultural societies the older someone is, the wiser and more knowledgeable they are consider to be. The caste system, which exists in India, is a system of classification which people are given at birth. There are four main castes with priests and nobles at the top, landowners 2nd, traders and farmers 3rd and servants at the bottom of the scale. ...read more.


They have moved from heavy industry to light industry by changing from unskilled manual work in factories to jobs in offices. The main way in which people are classed is on the basis of their occupation as this can create many differences between the classes. There will obviously be major differences in earnings between the classes with manual or factory workers earning significantly less than middle class professionals such as doctors or lecturers. Similar to earnings, there is a significant difference in the prestige associated with certain jobs. The example of doctor versus factory worker illustrates this point as there is more prestige given to doctors. Differences in education can cause major differences," usually the higher the education a person is the higher the occupation"(Moore S 1997) Generally this statement is true as very few graduates will choose a career working in manual low paid jobs. The higher the income the more spending capability that can lead to major differences in lifestyle between the classes. These differences can be seen in the car someone drives, their house and the number and type of holidays they take. There are definite styles of dress associated with a certain class. Middle class professionals would commonly wear suits or smart casual style clothing whereas working class are more associated with wearing more casual clothes such as jeans and sweatshirts. ...read more.


For example the unemployed, rich non-workers, house wives, retired and disabled are left out and as with the Registrar General system it is male orientated. The 1998 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC), with 822 detailed occupations, reflects the current occupational structure in the United States and was designed to provide a universal occupational classification system. Occupations are classified based on the work performed, and on the required skills, education, training, and credentials for each one. All of the occupations in this structure are classified at four levels of aggregation to suit the needs of various data users. Each occupation is given a unique six-digit code that not only identifies the occupation, but the four levels of aggregation as well. Occupations are classed based upon work performed, skills, education and training required for the job The practice of officially classifying the British population according to occupation and industry began in 1851. The occupational element was gradually increased from 1881, and in 1887 the idea was first mooted by the Assistant Registrar General that, for mortality analyses, the population might be divided into broad groups based on social standing. No one system could class every member of society by his or her occupation due to the ever-changing nature of society. However the more modern the system the applicable they are. A system designed in the 1970's would no longer be of use as society has changed so dramatically since it's first introduction. ...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 as a form of Social Stratification.

    laws that prohibit employers asking such questions during interviews, this doesn't stop this being a common view. Education is different from other forms of socialisation such as family because it involves an instruction that is deliberate expression of a formal institution.


    Labor in the Caste system operates from birth, i.e., if you are born in the Kshatriya, you are a warrior and you inherit your father's position. We can see this in the class system through the Packer and Murdoch families, where their children inherit their power and wealth.

  1. What are the major dimensions of social stratification?

    This means there is little or no social or caste mobility. Social mobility is the opportunity of movement from one stratum to another. In the caste system, a person cannot rise or move positively from a lower caste to a higher caste in the system.

  2. Effects of pollution on the Nigerian ecosystem

    The "monkey trial" of the activist and several others that supported the fight and their subsequent execution speaks to the attitude held by the powerful in this country towards the pollution of these lands. Saro-Wiwa's murder caused an immediate suspension of Nigeria from the Commonwealth of Nations.

  1. Working More Creatively With Groups.

    to each other describe their passage and it would been easy to switch off and not listen but due to the skills that I had learned the week before I was able to focus and listen and I found that this helped me understand more about what my class mates were explaining.

  2. Gender and the Manga Industry.

    Through humor, science fiction, romance and sexually and violently oriented stories, the constantly repressed citizens can escape, at low cost, this over-informed consumer society. So what does mangas reflect about gender issues in the Japanese society? First of all, mangas are divided into 2 main types - Shonen manga and Shojo manga.

  1. Social Stratification – Ethnicity, Gender and Class

    The reason it is so important is because non-white people make up three-quarters of the human race and we are living in a global economic world. Ultimately, all scientific studies must have a moral aspect and sociological study of the behaviour of society is no exception.

  2. Caste system in HinduismThe historical background It is difficult to trace out when ...

    The conclusion is that no where in ancient India, the low class people were treated and placed so differently and maliciously as they are today in the Hindu social order. The Nature of free Intermixing of the People Rg Veda, Sat path Brahman, Taittarya Upanishad, all speak of only the three divisions and none speaks of the fourth one.

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