Sociology | Social Inequality
S217 | 10968 | Junisbai

Through a primary focus on the major dimensions of inequality we will
explore why certain groups and individuals receive larger amounts of
valued resources, such as money, prestige, and power.  Do some people
simply try harder than others or is there truth to the old saying
that some people are in the right place at the right time?  In other
words, what do some groups of people earn and what are they simply
given?  We will examine some classic sociological treatments of
inequality along with the more recent theories.  This course will
offer an in-depth look at both the causes and consequences of
inequality in contemporary U.S. society.  We will also compare and
contrast the U.S. experience with that of two other rich industrial
societies  Germany and Japan.  Although we will pay some attention
to inequalities based on race and gender, our primary focus will be
on inequalities related to social class.  At the end of the term
students will have a clear understanding of the patterns of social
inequality within the United States, the processes by which
inequalities are reproduced, and an appreciation of the experiences
of individuals across the social class spectrum.  The ultimate goal
of this course is to provide students with the tools to better
understand inequality in their personal lives, their communities, and
the broader social world.