Social Structure and Social Stratification
- be able to identify the scientific essence of problems in one’s professional area, to choose appropriate theoretical concepts to describe real-world manifestations of social inequality and stratification, to produce coherent explanations of the mechanisms behind stratification systems, to use theoretical models to interpret the results of empirical research
- be able to support theoretical arguments with empirical data, to elaborate collectively on the mechanisms of social stratification, to critically evaluate empirical data to argue on the matters of social stratification
- be able to select optimal indicators to study inequality, to identify social and cognitive mechanisms that bias one’s perception of social structure, to develop conceptual models of social and individual processes that reproduce social structure, to operationalize the concepts and categories of social structure using appropriate indices
- be able to apply theoretical concepts to the analysis of the real-life manifestations of social inequality, to suggest mechanisms of mitigating the effects of social inequality through analyzing social processes on multiple levels
- Categories of Social StructureLecture 1. Categories of Social Structure Studies. Privileges Inequality. Sameness and equality. Stratification. Structure. Typification and categories. Social cognitive science. Age. Gender. Race. Socio-economic groups. Estate, caste, class as generic categories. Institutes and norms. Inequality, discrimination and privileges. Asymmetry of perception of inequality and privileges. White privilege. Male privilege. Residential privilege. Gender inequality in historical perspective. Liberation of women and everyday gender inequality. The pressure on boys. Seminar 3-5. Boundaries between Social Strata. Neo-Weberian analysis of class and status. Status order and class schema, their applicability to the Russian case. Signals and cues for social perception. Boundary policing. Language markers of class. Middle class and opportunity hoarding.
- Operationalizing InequalitySeminars 6-7. Within-Country Inequality. Measures of economic inequality. Lorenz curve and Gini coefficient. Cumulative advantages of upper classes. Wealth concentration, financialization, “the 1%”. How wealth becomes power. Elites in Russia and abroad.
- Faces and Effects of InequalityLecture 2. Poverty Poverty. Defining poverty. The poor as a category and a group. Extreme forms of poverty and destitution. Poverty traps. Social capital as a poverty trap. Seminars 8-10. Poverty. Lower middle class and downward mobility. Precarious jobs and unemployment. Poverty traps in time and space. The effects of poverty. Urban poverty experiences in the US, Europe and Russia. Spatial inequality in Russia. Lecture 3. Inequality and Health Inequality and health. Health, development and happiness curves depending on income. Status and health. Effects of poverty. Loads, cognitive load. Long-term effects of poverty. Poverty and children development. Lecture 4. Racial Disparity Racial and socio-economic inequality in relation to each other and in dynamics. Changes in American ghetto. Wealth and its effects: wealth vs. income in explaining racial disparity. Seminars 11-12. Universal Basic Income. Debates on the UBI introduction. How UBI changes the balance of power.
- Social Stratification AnalysisSeminars 1-2. Class and Status Analysis. Erik Olin Wright on class analysis. Relational and gradational approaches to class. Max Weber on class, status, and party.
- Interim assessment (3 module)0.15 * Home Assignment + 0.15 * In-class Participation + 0.3 * Quiz + 0.4 * Written Exam
- Levine, R., Acker, J., Baca-Zinn, M., Collins, P. H., Cox, O., Davis, K., … Wright, E. O. (2006). Social Class and Stratification : Classic Statements and Theoretical Debates (Vol. 2nd ed). Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=634844
- Tilly, C. (1998). Durable Inequality. Berkeley: University of California Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=6819
- Bottero, W. (2005). Stratification : Social Division and Inequality. London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=116686
- Romero, M., & Margolis, E. (2005). The Blackwell Companion to Social Inequalities. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=147324