What is sociology? Sociology is the social science that studies
human society and social behavior. Sociologists are interested in social
interaction which is a way to see how people relate to one another and
influence each other’s behavior. A sociologist is someone who studies human’s
social lives, activities’ interactions, and processes and organizations within
the context’s large social, political, and economical forces. They study the
behavior and interaction with groups, organizations, institutions, and nations.
They also look at actions in social, religious, political, economical, and
business organizations. Most sociologists work in research organizations,
universities, regional and federal government, and consulting service firms.
There are so many major questions asked about our social world.
For example, are men and women different? Why do we have issues such as racism?
What pushes people to have social status and respect? Where does a person stand
in society? What is his social level?
Sociological researches are being used to solve social problems
and formulate public policy for educators, lawmakers, administrators, and
social workers. Sociologists work in a wide range of social topics like health,
crime, education, racial and ethnic relations, families, populations, gender,
poverty, and aging.
All through human science’s history, there have been numerous
popular sociologists who have left their blemish on the field of human science
and in addition to the world on the loose. August Comte was one of the best known
sociologists. August Comte coined the term sociology to describe the study of
society. Comte was fascinated by the sources and the results of the French
revolution. From this he focused on two basic areas of study which are social
order and social change. Social order is when everything is in place while social
change is when things change in society. He suggested that certain processes,
that he called ‘social static’, held society together. Comte stated that
society changes through certain processes, which he called social dynamics.
They are processes that cause change. He believed that these two social forces
could be known through scientific research.
Another known sociologist is Herbert Spencer; he applied the
principle of biology in society. Spencer believed that like a living organism,
society is a set of interdependent parts that work together to maintain the
system over time. Spencer’s theory was similar to Darwin’s theory of the growth
of biological organisms to describe the essence of society. During a society’s growth
toward stability and perfection, Spencer considered social change and unrest to
be natural existence. Spencer thought that no steps should be taken to correct
social ills because he believed that only the ones in the best position would
survive. Since Spencer’s idea of society was similar to Darwin’s ideas, his
view of society became known as social Darwinism.
Max Weber was unlike the early sociologists, he was intrigued in
separate groups within society rather than society as a whole. This
significance on groups led Weber to focus more on the consequences of society
on an individual. Weber also believed that sociologist should go past studying what
can be directly observed and try to discover people’s feelings and thoughts. Weber
suggested doing this by using verstehen, which is putting one’s self in the
place of others and trying to see situations through their eyes. He also employed
the concept ideal type; a description comprised of the essential
characteristics of a feature of society.
Karl Marx emphasized the primary role that conflict plays in
social change and recommended revolution to speed up the process of change. Marx
believed that the society is influenced by its economy. It is divided into two
classes; the poor and the rich. The rich were known as bourgeoisie or
capitalist while the poor were known as proletariat or workers. The bourgeoisie
owned the means of production known as the material and methods used to produce
goods and services; while the proletariat only owned the labor needed to
produce goods and provide services. This imbalance in power would naturally
lead to conflict between the capitalist and the workers and will only end when
the proletariat over throw the bourgeoisie and create a classless society.
What is social class? Social class as known as ‘class’, is a
group of people within the same society who carry the same socioeconomic
status. The word class first came into wide use in the early 19th century;
it released words like rank and order as descriptions of the major vertical
groupings in society. The three techniques to rank individuals according to
social class are subjective, reputational, and objective as in income,
occupation, and education level. The class distribution is upper class, upper
middle class, lower middle class, working class, and lower class.
The upper class status tends to be
attributed rather than achieved status. They attend only private schools and
most of the times have a college education. They have the tendency to marry
within their class. Each one in the upper class members knows the other and
they’re known by all other social classes in the community. They have a strong
concept in the way they work so they have a strong influence on others.
Upper middle class deal with ideas
and people. They tend to live in civil environment and most of them are college
educated. They are people like doctors, lawyers, and professors. They are very
active in the community through their volunteering and leadership. In their
childhood, socializations focused on discipline, effort, and education.
Lower middle class deals with people and paper. These are the white
collar workers such as small business owners, clerks, and low level managers.
They are concerned about respectability; they value hard work, honesty, and thrift.
The amount of education, unlike the upper class greatly varies between them.
On the other hand the working class
is known as the people that work with an object. Blue collar works such as
factory workers and mechanics. They have jobs as oppose to careers. They value
hard work, cleanliness and respectability. They are unlikely to volunteer; they
maintain very strict roles, especially while raising kids and are most likely
to use socialization, in addition to the attitudes being gloomy.
While lower class is known as the people that are consistent of
unskilled workers, domestic workers, and migrant workers. They tend to be
chronically unemployed, have a higher chance to drop out of school and are
forced to live in sub-standard housing. They receive fewer city services, get lower
quality of health care and have low level of community interactions. In
addition to that, they tend to be fatalistic because of the problems they have;
they start to have low level of aspirations, low self-esteem, and become
hopeless. Adulthood for them starts around 15.
Everyone has a social class. Some people work on it and some get
it when they’re born. Every person has his way to take their stand in their
class. The upper class has two types that are new and old money. New money is
working to earn the money but this rarely happens, since the way they get money
is through old money, in which they depend, on their parents to always give
them money and inheriting it at the end.
Opposing the upper class, the middle class people have a strong
background, they tend to finish their studies and earn their degree so they can
earn money where they stand. While in the lower class most of them are
uneducated and barely have enough money to live. This leads them to adulthood
at a very young age and carrying responsibility of earning that money. In
addition to that, there are under class people. Those people don’t have homes
to live in so they either live in poorhouse, which is a government-run facility
that supports the people in need, or simply on the streets.
Social class is affecting everyone in positive and negative
ways. Some people think that their social class allows them to do whatever they
want, like the ones in the upper class think that if they asked someone in the
government to let a person out of investigation, that would directly happen
because they think no one can stop them; another class lives a normal happy
life while others don’t know what to do with their lives. The upper class
people also do illegal things because they think that with their money they can
escape from everything, as if money is always the solution. For example, if
someone in the lower class killed someone he would go to jail, whereas such a
thing doesn’t happen in the upper class, since they know that they have someone
who got their back and will pay money to close the case.
People have a social mark that identifies them as ones from the
upper class so that people will know who that it and will care more than if
they are just people under the upper class. They are also more famous and given
more respect because of the wealth and power they have. Unlike the upper class,
the upper middle class are humble. They interact with other classes normally
not differentiating between them at all. They don’t mind living in a normal
environment. Their job is to help people with what they want. Almost all upper
middle class people have their diplomas because they were able to continue
their studies. This is what gives them their position, and it is a good
influence for the next generation that will teach them how to stay in the upper
middle class and it helps them if they want to go to certain college or work.
The working class are people who work in blue
collar job. A blue collar job is a job where you use hands and machines to
work. It’s a rough job to do that leads to stress, and with a small payment. It’s
a big issue when it comes to the budget; it causes many problems with other
workers even families and friends. The amount of money they get paid is not
enough for them and their families. This causes kids to drop out of school at
an early age for them to start working which means their adulthood starts
earlier than other normal kids. The parents will treat their kids in a rough
way which might lead them to do illegal things like drugs or stealing. Most of
the kids feel they are different from other kids because of their parents. For
example, some parents don’t give their kids enough money and don’t let them go
out a lot so they will feel they have less freedom and that they’re missing out
on what other kids have. This ruins those kids’ personality, freedom and the
way they act and interact with other people.
On the other hand, the kids of the working
class compared to the middle class will be tougher and manlier because the
middle and upper class are obviously more spoiled; they get everything easily without
doing anything, whereas the working class kids have to work hard to get what
they want since nothing comes easy for them. This is something positive for
them in the future because when they get what they want they will know how
precious it is for them, so they will take care of it. Whereas the middle class
and the upper class won’t know its value and might not care about it at all,
since they know that whenever they want something like it again or any other
thing they’ll get it in a blink, they didn’t work hard for it.
Moreover, people in the lower class have more
humanity than the ones of the upper and middle class. Those two classes don’t
care about anyone but themselves and have everything given to them while the
ones of the lower class aren’t able to have this chance. The situation of the
lower class has given them the chance to put the people they care about first
and feel the love of others, when they want something done they would have to
do it themselves. Humanity is something that lets the lower class care and help
others who are in need like them because in the end they all help each other
out. The ones that are of upper and middle class care about no one but themselves
and no humanity in them which lets some of them become ruthless. Upper and
middle class don’t help each other out when in need; they have a competition
between each other because of their high standards.
The lower class even help the ones that live
a life even harder than theirs’, because of their humanity that was established
in them throughout their lives and came to them through their living standards.
“The upper class desire to remain so, the middle class wish to overthrow the
upper class, and the lower class want a classless system”, a quote written by
George Orwell that explains how the upper class only want what is best for them
by staying on the top, how the middle class want to have more power over the
lower class and how the lower class want to live in an equal society.
The underclass are the lowest social class in
the community. They are poor and unemployed. And because of their unemployment
they face a lot of problems like having no shelter, no food, no education and
many other things. Most of them live by begging for money so they can fulfill
their basic needs, food and outfit. Some of them don’t even get enough money to
good food and that causes starvation and death. This is increasing nowadays
since jobs’ opportunities are decreasing. They don’t have money, they won’t be
able to get their education and since they are not educated they won’t be able
to have a family. Let’s say he does have a family, this would cause him to work
way harder and .live a tougher life than if he was on his own. He will struggle
because of his duty to feed and educate his kids. In addition to that, the most
important need that the people in the underclass can’t afford is medical help.
They can’t go into any hospital without money so if his case was some simple it
might become something severe because he couldn’t cure his sickness.
The government should help the people in
need. They should help them by providing for them shelter, food and free
hospitals to satisfy their needs and give them the medical help they need. They
can make credits so they can get medical help for free. They should take more
taxes from the upper class people for them to give and help the underclass that
really needs this help. They should also provide free education for all the
kids no matter what class they came from.
As a conclusion, we stress again on the idea that social class
is a group of people within the same society who carry the same socioeconomic
status. There is more than one class in the social class, which are upper
class, middle class, working class, and underclass. Everyone has a position he stands
in, according to the power, wealth, and standards that he has because of that
specific class he belongs to. Upper class has everything, the middle class can
be said that they also have everything but not completely like the upper class,
and whereas the working class doesn’t have the wealth which is limited for them
and what they might always need, and finally the underclass have nothing at
all. Such discrimination because of one’s money status must be cancelled.
I find that social class is something wrong to judge someone by
what he has, own and the power he has because money is not everything in life.
There are so many more important things that a person should think of when it
comes to the interaction between people; like honesty, care, loyalty and most
importantly the good will and good heart. What’s the point to have money and
not knowing how to act with people or even family? Everyone should be treated
the same no one should be taken care of more than others because of the money
he has. People should act in a humble way so that others will respect them and
give them the standards they must have as good people. Also when people are
humble, the more people will like them and would talk about them in a positive
way instead of saying they’re showoffs and they think they own the world with
their money. Instead of using this money on things that are useless sometimes,
but they’re just a way for rich people to spend their money; they can donate
them to the poor.
People do good when good is done to them, they treat others like
they are treated, so if we have a world without social class, a world full of
help and care between people, where everyone treats the other according to his
specification as a good person or not, and not according to his money and
power; we will have a productive and helpful society that knows no
discrimination between people whatsoever was the class they came from. At the
end we are all humans and have rights in this world, and deserve to be treated
equally no matter what.