Social stratification is the ranking of individuals in a hierarchy of unequal wealth, occupational prestige, and power. It is a feature of society and not a reflection of individual uniqueness or differences. Stratification is a universal feature found in all societies: agrarian, industrial, and postindustrial. Furthermore, socialization and cultures reproduce stratification and transmit it from one generation to the next.
Social institutions such as education, the economy, politics, and government maintain the stratified status quo. The goal of these institutions is to provide the needs of society and not a radical transformation of structured inequality. Changes in social stratification are usually slow and incremental rather than fast and revolutionary.
This discussion will give you an insight into the difficulties all societies face with regards to social stratification. Based on your readings and understanding of the above issues, discuss the answer to the following question with your classmates:
- Is it possible to establish a society in which there is no stratification based on class? Explain your response with reasons.