slavery system of stratification characteristics
Weber suggested three types of market situations (i) labour market, (ii) money market, and (iii) commodity market. It is no less based on the considerations of superiority and inferiority, authority and subordination, profession and vocation. Three Characteristics of Stratified Systems 1. Although many sociologists use the term inequality and social stratification interchangeably, social stratification is seen as a specific form of social inequality. In this way we find that system of stratification helps in the progress of the society. Characteristics of Feudalism:-Unlike slavery system this practice was a legal practice, it provided everyone’s rights and duties. Persons with appropriate knowledge and training occupy appropriate positions. Stratification was present even in the small wandering bands. Sorokin has criticised Marx’s theory on three grounds. Fourth, the sociologists cast doubt on the implicit assumption that actual differentials of reward do reflect difference in the skills required for particular occupations. Karl Marx never gave theory of stratification; he gave a theory of social class on the basis of which we derive stratification or inequality in society. To liberate itself, therefore, the proletariat must abolish itself as a class, thus abolishing all classes and class rule as such. Revolution has not occurred and will not occur because of expanded social services, greater employment, security and increased employment benefits. Status in the case of class system is achieved and not ascribed. Machiavelli asked who is fit to rule and what form of rule will produce order, happiness, prosperity and strength. the man made inequality may be horizontal or vertical e.g. The high rewards attached to these positions provide required motivation for such performances. Because it may prevent those with superior abilities from performing certain tasks which are preserve of a privileged class. In society where there is an unequal distribution of rewards, those who have power take hold these rewards. Biological traits do not determine social superiority and inferiority until they are socially recognised. Does this mean that the skills of the surgeon are twenty times greater or more valuable to society than those of the miner. That is to say, class is determined by a person’s market situation, which depends largely on whether or not he owns property. According to Weber, Property, Prestige and power constitute three separate though interacting, bases on which hierarchies are created in a society. All human societies from the simple to the most complex have some form of social inequality. Both the property owners and the property less can and frequently do, belong to the same states-group. Men have long dreamed of an egalitarian society, a society in which all members are equal. As Gisbert says, “Social stratification is the division of society into permanent groups of categories linked with each other by the relationship of superiority and subordination. It is the most popular occupation. status roles which are preferred by majority of I the people are evaluated higher e.g. A structure of social class involves (1) a hierarchy status groups, (2) the recognition of the superior – inferior positions and (3) some degree of permanency of the structure. In advanced societies occupations are related to social status. Weber argues that the evidence provides a more complex and diversified picture of social stratification. These often have overlapping membership and sometimes under special circumstances, the economic class is virtually identical with the status group and the political party. For, example, a surgeon earns twenty times more than a coal miner. Prestige, reward involve the exercise of greater power. It is more true in case of those societies in which statuses are achieved. Functionalists assure that there are certain basic needs or functional prerequisites which must be met for the survival of the society. He talked about three classes: (i) Very Rich, (ii) Very Poor, and (iii) Moderate. A caste system is a social system based on ascribed statuses, which are traits or characteristics that people possess as a result of their birth. The nobility and their important vassals enjoyed the privileges and the rest lived in misery. These rules constitute “Social Contract”, under which people give the right to one man to rule, who has collective desire and will. This may be in the field of sports, education, occupation etc. These rewards – usually economic, prestige and leisure-are attached to or built in to the social position. The serfdom continued till 1861, when it was finally abolished. However, even within the caste system those members who perform their caste roles effectively and efficiently occupy higher’ status. The multitudes were serfs. The differentiation between classes existed as early as the Indus Valley society. Social stratification is indispensable to any complex society, they say. The oldest and most closed stratification system is slavery. “. It is of varied nature. He is the property of his master. Wealth will be distributed equally among the population. They had juristic immunities and political privileges; they made law their handmade and held men under bondage. As no one group is self-sufficient it cannot meet the needs of its members. 2. But antagonism would not disappear, class antagonism would disappear in a Marxist Utopia, but surely other types of antagonism would arise. At the bottom of the structure lies the lowest social class and above it other social classes arranged in a hierarchy. They were somewhat better than slaves who in law, were chattels. Weber emphasized the existence of three types of groups based on different forms of inequality and the fact that they may be independent of one another. The system of achieved status also provides an opportunity for upward and downward mobility. Status, he says, stands in sharp opposition to the pretension of property. Rosenfeld’s study lends some support to the functionalist claim that social stratification, at least in terms of power and prestige, is inevitable. As exemplified by caste, social stratification involves a hierarchy of social groups. (ii) The skills and abilities that are believed necessary for adequate role performance such, as surgical, numerical or linguistic skills. Power and Prestige inequalities are essential for the coordination and integration of a specialised division of labour. Her study was on Israeli Kibbutizim system and many of Kibbutizim are found on the Marxist Principle of from everyone according to ability – to everyone according to need. Some people are free while other people are property. Class is almost universal phenomenon. North to rank occupations in USA. The system leads to two kind of consequences: (i) Life chances and (ii) Life style. The persons with more training skills, experience and education are given better positions. However, slavery as a system of stratification is typically based on strict constructs of race, nationality, or cultural/ethnic identity. A different view of society is taken by the conflict theorists, who see stratification as the result of the differential distribution of power in which coercion, domination, exploitation are viewed as key processes. So the relationship between social groups is one of reciprocity. Biological traits to not become relevant in patterns of social superiority and inferiority until they are socially recognized and given importance by being incorporated into the beliefs, attitudes and values of the people in the society. Weber actually used the terms class, status and party respectively to refer to three orders – economic, social and political. Social-economic classification/ categorization: A stratified society is one with distinct social classes. This system has led to progress and development of the country. Societies may differ in the degree of inequalities and nature of stratification. People differ in terms of their innate ability and talent. In Russia, for example, about nine-tenth of arable land consisting of large estates belonged to the Czar, the royal family and to about one lakhs of the noble families. There are some sociologists who are of the opinion that social stratification is also associated with dysfunctions e.g. Classless society is just an ideal. As trade died down during the Middle Ages, so did slavery. Differentiation and ranking are further solidified by the evaluation process. In slavery, every slave had his master to whom he was subjected. The rising capitalist class overthrew the feudal aristocracy and will be similarly displaced by the working class. Plato was one of the first to acknowledge that inequality is inevitable and to suggest ways in which the distribution of money, status and power could be altered for the betterment of both the individual and the society. They had no civic rights. They argue that all social system share certain functional prerequisite which must be met for survival and effective operation of the system. The ruling class always holds itself superior to those over whom it rules. (i) Personal characteristics that people are thought to need if they are to learn and perform the roles effectively such as intelligence, aggressiveness and politeness. If each activity is associated with same type of economic returns and prestige, there will be no competition for different occupations. Influence, a by-product of social interaction and culture, is reciprocal it exists in many forms and is unevenly distributed throughout the social order. The population of a society may be divided into freemen and slaves. Responsibilities, resources and rights are assigned to status not to particular individuals. Thus, those who perform successfully in terms of society’s values will be ranked highly and they will be likely to receive a variety of rewards. Fifth, Tumin has rejected the view of Davis and Moore that the function of unequal rewards is to motivate talented individuals and allocate them to functionally most important positions. They look to social stratification to see how far it meets these functional prerequisites. Therefore high reward is necessary to provide incentive to encourage people to undergo training for a position to compensate them for the sacrifice involved. (iii) General qualities of the task e.g. nowadays there is fashion among students to go for Engineering job. The rankings apply to social categories of people who share a common characteristic without necessarily interacting or identifying with each other. 4. For example, if a society places a high value on bravery and generosity, as in the case of the Sioux Indians, those who exceed in terms of the qualities will receive a high rank in the stratification system. Balban (1266- 86), a Turk by origin, was full with the notion of racial superiority, and held that a Turk alone had the qualities to rule. The transition to socialism does not takes place automatically. To conclude, Weber conceives of society stratified into three kinds of social segregation. It refers to the division of a population into strata, one on the top of another, on the basis of certain characteristics like inborn qualities, material possessions and performance. Functionalists maintain that certain degree of order and stability are essential for the operation of social system. Most of the social stratification types are based on the social-economic classification. Marx himself referred to Augustine Theory as the “father of class struggle in French historical writings”. Power is legitimate authority in a sense that is generally accepted as just and proper by members of society as a whole. But not the vice versa. The system of stratification motivates the individuals to work hard so that they can improve upon their social status. difficulty, cleanliness, danger and so forth. In simpler communities we may not find any class strata apart from the distinction between members of the groups and strangers, distinction based on age, sex kinship. The most important criteria for understanding the process of differentiation is ranking. It could be argued that a doctor is functionally more important than a nurse. This is readily apparent in closed systems such as caste and racial stratification. They were considered like commodities. Marx’s basic thought was that the proletariat which sets all the means of production in motion yet never owns them is the ‘last class ‘. But no society can survive unless it has some system of stratification. The fast exploitative mode of production was slavery, in which the principal classes were slaves and slave-owners. It follows from Parson’s argument that there is a general belief that stratification system are just, right and proper, since they are basically an expression of shared values. The society was divided into chiefs, shamans, and other tribe members. Therefore, it was a closed stratification system, as mobility was not possible. Democracy did not demolish the distinctions. Ascribed statuses can include race, gender, nationality, body type, and age. Factors that define stratification vary in different societies. This view is known as functionalist theory of social stratification. To the economic dimension (class) of stratification Weber added two other dimensions, ‘Prestige and Power’. In societies that have closed stratification systems, such inequalities are institutionalised and rigid. This explains the psychology behind the ‘lord’ and ‘servant’ relationship. They say, there is the necessity to distribute prestige according to the importance to society of a social position. The slave is practically at the disposal of his master. Before publishing your articles on this site, please read the following pages: 1. In newly independent countries such as ours, political power rests with a political class of ‘new men’ of no great substance who by founding and dominating the party and the Government, become a new ruling elite. Social stratification is an inherent character of all societies. They are the sources of learning, wisdom and truth. Slavery is a system of social stratification that has been institutionally supported in many societies around the world throughout history. This relationship extends to the strata in a stratification system. Social Inequality and Social Stratification: Inequality is found in all societies irrespective of time or place. Secondly, he held that economic classes do not normally constitute communities, but status groups do. One such functional prerequisite is effective role allocation and performance. This functional base has given rise to sub castes. His education, training skills, experience, personality, character etc. Origin of the word – the “Caste” origin into Spanish word ‘casta’ which means “breed, race, strain or a complex of hereditary qualities”. The positions are unequal with regard to power, property, evaluation and psychic gratification. Difference between the rich and poor, powerful and humble, freemen and slaves was there in almost all the ancient civilisation. Each system has its own mobility, with slavery being the most closed and class the most open. They, therefore, want to consider how stratification systems help to maintain order and stability of society. It is true that factors such as strength, intelligence, age, sex can often serve as the basis on which status are distinguished. Social classes, says Ginsberg, may be described as portions of the community, or collection of individuals, standing to each other in the relation of quality and marked of from other persons by accepted standards of superiority and inferiority. This mechanism is social stratification. M.M. However, modern stratification fundamentally differs from stratification in the primitive societies. 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