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Social Inequality Issue Analysis Essay

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Updated: Sep 21st, 2021


Social inequalities are the core of society’s structure and functioning. A society, as an institution, has developed specific ways of carrying out basic functions which involve economic production, government machine, and so on. Thesis Social inequality is a system and systematic worked as the framework of society and its functionality.

Main text

Social inequality is culturally embodied in beliefs and norms based on the idea of exploitation and class division. The two classes whose existence is recognized are associated with different forms of “property” — the working class and the ruling class (Johnson 156). This structure is historically determined and followed by all modern societies. But the existence of substantial income inequalities is not associated with class (or strata) privileges or hierarchy, for it reflects the differing merits of individuals, i.e., their differential contribution to production. There is a sense, of course, in which one class — the ruling class — is regarded as having a superior status rooted in its historic mission.

It is associated with a higher form of property and played the leading role in the transition to capitalism (Johnson 153). Social inequality is systematic because it determines labor relations and becomes an engine of economic growth. Social inequality enters all levels of social organization reflected in hierarchical social relations and organizational hierarchy of duties and functions. The language and conceptual apparatus of social stratification have thus become part of the discourse on social structure. Its assimilation into social thought is evidenced in a variety of forms. What is acknowledged to be a hierarchical social structure are essentially confined to the primary units of economic organization — industrial enterprises and farms. Quality of labor or position in the division of labor is presented as the principal criteria of social differentiation (Andersen 23).

Another important aspect of social inequality is rewards differences. Low skills and unprofessional workers are always low-rewarded employees in contrast to highly qualified professionals. If an unequal relation to the means of production is no longer the principal source of economic and social differentiation — as it presumably is under capitalism — it becomes the underlying mechanism that generates and reproduces inequalities in income, cultural levels, and prestige (Johnson 153). Johnson also states that racial differences influence social inequality and low pay. “Given the historical legacy that encourages whites to feel a sense of superiority and entitlement in relations to the people of color, such competition is bound to provoke anger and resentment” (51). Personnel employed in the higher levels of government ministries, planning agencies, the scientific establishment are included in the socio-occupational strata whose incomes, lifestyles, and opportunities for intergenerational transmission of status, Those groups control the allocation of society’s productive resources and its reward structure are excluded from scrutiny. All individuals have an essentially similar relationship to the means of production, they contribute unequally to society’s economic and cultural development. This reflects the need to “attach” individuals — often for extended periods — to specific work activities of differing significance to society.


In sum, the division of labor into mental and manual, complex and routine, managerial and subordinate job functions becomes a division of society into distinct social groups retaining relatively fixed occupational positions throughout their work careers and contributing unequally to economic and cultural growth. social inequality is reinforced in all levels of the organization and is seen as the normal functioning of the economy, given the still inadequate state of the productive forces, does not permit anything like an equal sharing or rotation of different job functions among the members of the workforce.

Works Cited

Andersen, M. Race, Class, and Gender, Wadsworth Pub Co; 4 edition, 2000.

Johnson, A. G. Privilege, Power, and Difference. McGraw-Hill Humanities/Social Sciences/Languages, 2001.

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