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Why is Social Stratification Universal?

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Presentation on theme: "Why is Social Stratification Universal?"— Presentation transcript:

1 Why is Social Stratification Universal?

2 Functionalist View Kingsley Davis & Wilbert Moore felt that stratification in society is inevitable because: Society must make certain that its positions are filled Some positions are more important than others The more important positions must be filled by the more qualified people To motivate the more qualified people to fill these positions, society must offer them greater rewards

3 Example: General Motors
Daniel F. Akerson (CEO) Greater responsibility Must answer to the Board of Trustees Must answer to stock holders His actions can affect the outcome of many jobs

4 Accountable Positions
Greater rewards for its more demanding and accountable positions Position requires more training (college education and testing) Society works better if its most qualified people hold its most important spots

5 Melvin Tumin Finds Flaws
Tumin uses 3 arguments against functionalist position Functionalists say the most important positions get the higher rewards. But how do we know that the positions with the highest rewards are the most important? Surgeons and Garbage Collectors (both important) Need for independent ways to measure importance

6 Tumin’s Arguments Functionalists felt that all positions would be awarded by merit. But what do we really have? Is it true ability that goes to college or is it based on money Society places men above women, which means talent and ability holds the highest positions is not true.

7 Tumin’s Argument If social stratification is so fuctional, almost everyone should benefit from it. People born in poor societies and women delegated to “women’s work” are examples of people not maximizing their mental abilities

8 Conflict Perspective Conflict theorists feel conflict not function is the reason why we have social stratification Gaetano Mosca (Italian Sociologist) felt every society will be stratified by power No society exist unless it is organized It will always require some sort of leadership Leadership means inequalities of power Some people take leadership, some people are followers Human nature is self centered People in power will use their position to get greater rewards

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