Sociology | Social Inequality
S217 | 10257 | Junisbai


In this course we ask “who gets what and why?”  How are power,
privilege, and prestige distributed among individuals and groups in
society and why do some enjoy more than others?  We will examine how
various inequalities have evolved over time and ask how these
inequalities shape the life chances of individuals in different
socioeconomic, racial/ethnic, and gender groups.

Throughout the course we will give particular attention to the
experience of the contemporary U.S. and to the challenges that
recent developments pose for American society.  We will begin by
describing the extent of inequality in the U.S.  Next, we will
examine some classic sociological treatments of inequality along
with more theories.  We will then return to the topic of inequality
in the U.S., examine the fortunes of different groups, and take a
closer look at the processes that generate inequality.  We will also
compare and contrast the U.S. experience with that of two other rich
industrial societies - Japan and Germany.  The idea motivating this
comparison is that we can better understand American society by
learning more about other societies.

My ultimate goal on this course is to help you develop a better
understanding of inequality in contemporary societies.