Social Class and Inequality

Please answer each question separately and make it 1 page per question.

1. Explain the ideas of both Karl Marx and Max Weber and how they thought about social class; be sure to discuss the main themes of their work. Then, analyze the similarities and differences between the views of the two men. Analyze the applicability of their work to the situation in the U.S. today. Does one mans view better describe what is happening today? Why or why not? Where are you now in the Gilbert-Kahl Class Structure (page 12) and where are you hoping to be? What is your plan for achieving that goal? Are you confident that you will achieve it?  (Chapter 1)

2. Discuss in detail the study of prestige and social class in Yankee city and the findings. Also, explain in detail the study by Coleman and Rainwater and their findings. Describe the problem the researchers had regarding the distinction between blue- and white-collar workers and how they solved it (note see page 27). Do you agree with their decision? Why or why not? Finally, in your opinion does prestige matter in society is it helpful or not? Why or why not?  (Chapter 2)

3. Analyze in detail the reasons for the growing wage inequality in the U.S. today. Discuss how corporate strategies have played a role in this growing inequality. Discuss the work of Frank and Cook and explain how they argue that winner-take-all markets are another reason for the growing inequality. Explain what Gilbert believes is a problem with winner-take-all market explanation (see page 60).  (Chapter 3)

4. Explain the difference between progressive and regressive taxes; analyze the role that these play in the life of the working poor. Discuss the difference between gross assets and net worth and explain the three classes of wealth holders. Explain Gilberts analysis of how the distribution of wealth is changing. Finally, after reading the information about President Bidens plan to raise the tax on corporations, discuss whether you support or oppose the plan and why. (The information is in the module for week 4.)    (Chapter 4)   

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