Organizational Perspectives on Stratification
Organizations impinge on career outcomes in two important ways:
1) The division of labor among jobs and organizations generates a distribution of opportunities and rewards that often antedates the hiring of people to fill those jobs.
2) Organization procedures for matching workers to jobs affect the distribution of rewards and opportunities within and across firms and thus influence the likelihood of career success
Why Some Firms Pay and Promote More than Others
- ''Older approaches'': human capital, status attainment
-more recent approach: internal labor markets
INTERNAL LABOR MARKET: Competing Interpretations
1) Labor economists emphasize technical determinants: technological progress increases workers' skill monopoly in the firm and that internal advancement opportunities are required so that senior workers will train junior personnel
2) Williamson emphasizes informational constraints that favor internal labor promotion hierarchies over perfectly competitive labor market.
3) Neo-Marxists regarded internal labor markets as an effort by capitalists to control a volatile work force.
Researchers have documented the impact of internal labor markets in two ways:
1) Attempts to infer how internal labor markets operate from data on individual career paths. E.g. attainment researchers have attributed racial and sexual differences in the effects that schooling and first job have on career outcomes to the exclusion of women and minorities from internal labor markets. This research does not illuminate how or why this occurs.
2) Other investigators have analyzed career processes in their organizational setting directly, detailing the criteria that employers use in structuring rewards and opportunities. Unfortunately, this research has often been limited to specific work contexts.
THE IMPACT OF SIZE
-Wages are higher both in industries made up of large companies and in the larger companies within any given industry.
-Granovetter argues that these relationships only characterize manufacturing industries.
-Effects of schooling on income and status increase monotonically with the size of employee's work location (for white, male, nonagricultural workers) (Stolzenberg 1978).
- Large bureaucracies may pay and promote more because scale economies increase worker productivity, structure of demand allows higher wages to be absorbed in product pricing.
-Urban locations, where higher wages are necessary to offset competitors' offers
. -Large organization are more vulnerable to worker unrest and rewards are higher to reduce the chances of labor-management conflict.
IMPACT OF GROWTH
-Corporate growth increases promotion rates. (Even among those less likely to be promoted e.g. women).
-Economic contraction disproportionately harms those the growth helps.
IMPACT OF DEMOGRAPHY
-Individuals' careers are not independent (attainment research assumes they are).
-Size of one's organizational cohort and its relation to other cohorts significantly affects career outcomes. E.g. members of small cohorts experience enhances mobility prospects.
IMPACT OF TECHNOLOGY
-Automation raises the average level of worker skill and increases the variance within firms, giving rise to skill-based career lines that reflect job idiosyncrasies.
-Long-linked technologies (e.g. assembly lines) generate more lateral mobility because workers are interchangeable.
-Mediating and Intensive technologies (e.g. client-oriented banks and research labs, respectively) foster more upward mobility. (In specialized professions knowledge is crucial).
IMPACT OF UNIONIZATION
- ''Monopoly power'' perspective: unions push wages higher than productivity warrants, at the same time widening disparities between advantaged and disadvantaged groups.
- ''Collective violence'' perspective: regards union wage premiums as reasonable social reimbursements for the savings that unions generate in terms of proved governance and social control. Also viewed as equalizing agents.
-Unions emphasize seniority-based rewards, and collective bargaining often arises in work settings where it is difficult to discern the relationships between worker characteristics and rewards.
IMPACT OF ORGANIZATIONAL ENVIRONMENTS
-Good jobs are concentrated in ''core'' or monopolistic firms and industries. Explained by: technical mix; level of union and management interests in employment stability; ability to absorb higher labor costs due to market structure and demand schedules; growth, concentration, and change in organization forms; differences in the quantity and quality of managerial activity; and economic and political relationships with the state and foreign markets.
ORGANIZATIONAL DIFFERENCES IN MATCHING WORKERS TO JOBS - HOW CAREER DYNAMICS DEPEND ON THE ORGANIZATIONAL SETTING
Models of Employer Decision-Making
-Human Capital: workers possess vocational aspirations, which are treated as exogenous, and invest in human capital so as to maximize their utility and earnings, subject to various constraints (e.g. innate ability). Firm's labor needs are determined by its technology (capital-labor ratio) and product demand.
-marxian idea that ''control imperative'' shapes employment relations
-Contemporary models reject the underlying assumptions that both the worker and the firm have perfect information and pursue a maximizing strategy in their personnel decisions.
-Organizations face greatest uncertainty in evaluating employee potential early n their careers.
-How do employers cope with this dilemma?
-Education is one credential representing employee potential under imperfect information.
-Marxists argue that employers are motivated by a need to control the work force and use schooling to determine whether workers' values and traits are appropriate for the organizational control system in place.
-Kanter's idea of ''homosocial reproduction'' - similarities wrt sex, race, social background and family status indicate whether someone can be trusted and whether communication with him/her will be easy.
Organizational Career Stages
-Early career attainments are likely to reflect individuals' success in exploiting their ascribed and achieved attributes to pass initial ''tests.''
-Organization success is determined largely by one's immediate supervisor.
-Later, familial attachments constrain workers' achievements, particularly among women.
-Family commitments, habituation, and the aging process increase the attractiveness of extrinsic rewards and job security.
-Organization success is now defined more in terms specific to one's organization, profession, community, or other restricted reference group.
Interdependence of Workers' Career Outcomes
-The way specific attributes are evaluated depends on the demographic fit between an individual and the relevant organizational elites.
-Positions are clustered technically and administratively.
-Workplace norms promote social comparison.
-Wages are generally tied to ''key'' jobs, and thus other workers' salaries depend on the individuals serving in the ''key'' jobs.
-Granovetter's ''historical'' and ''structural embeddedness'' - career is constrained by how people have previously evaluated the worker and other relevant workers. Also, an individual's career cannot be predicted or understood apart from his or her relations with co-workers, collaborators, supervisors, and others.
-In abandoning the status attainment and human capital approaches, researchers have acknowledged that not all organizations emphasize the same criteria in selecting and advancing workers.
-Orthodox labor market research assumes a simple ''wage competitive'' model, viewing workers as entrepreneurs who market themselves to the highest bidding employer.
- ''Instead of people looking for jobs, there are jobs looking for ... 'suitable' people'' (Thurow 1972).
Effects of Stratification on Organizations:
-Theorists and researchers disagree about how hierarchy and inequality influence organizational effectiveness and individual well-being.
-Weber and Durkheim - hierarchy is efficient and inevitable
-Others associate hierarchy with alienation and pathological conformity.
-Esp. Marxists regard workplace stratification as a means of controlling labor by reproducing class divisions within the firm.
-Lack of sound empirical research
-Effects relations among organizations, particularly personnel flows.
BECK, HORAN, AND TOLBERT
''Stratification in a Dual Economy''
Review of Other Stratification Approaches:
1.) Functional Approach: Workers are placed within the socioeconomic order through a competitive process in which skills and abilities of differing value and scarcity are carefully identified, evaluated, and matched with societal needs (Parsons; Davis and Moore).
2.) Human Capital: the rational worker invests in training which will maximize the economic return (earnings) on investments while free competition among firs for labor skills guarantees a price for that labor (Becker; Mincer).
Both of these theories set for an individualistic conception of the relationship between labor force participation and social rewards. Socioeconomic success or failure is tied directly to the characteristics brought into the marketplace by the individual workers. There have been other attempts to broaden the scope of models of earnings determination (e.g., Stolzenberg, Spilerman), but the nature of the relationships between individual factors and structural factors warrants further consideration. While others have addressed the issue of the dominance of individual characteristics, Beck, et al. focus on the issue of fixed returns, the assumption by human capital theorists that economic returns to worker characteristics are uniform.
In order to do this, they rely on sectoral economic differentiation models based on theories of economic dualism. These models divide the industrial structure into distinctive sectors within which employers and workers face fundamentally different conditions and operate according to fundamentally different rules. Beck, et al. focus on two sectors:
1.) The core industrial sector: This is dominated by large corporate enterprises which came to constitute an oligopolistic system of production. It includes those industries that comprise the muscle of American economic and political power. The firms are noted for high productivity, high wages, high profits, intensive utilization of capital, high incidence of monopoly, and high degree of unionization. E.g., automobile, steel, and rubber industries.
2.) The peripheral sector: This is characterized by small firms, operating in a more or less open, competitive capitalistic environment. They are concentrated in agriculture, nondurable manufacturing, retail trade, and subprofessional services. The peripheral industries are noted for their small size, labor intensity, low profits, low productivity, intensive productivity, intensive product market competition, lack of unionization, and low wages. unlike the core sector industries, the periphery lacks the assets, size, and political power to take advantage of economies of scale or to spend large sums on research and development.
Theories of dual economy suggest that these sectoral differences have important implications for the opportunity structures and experiences faced by individual workers. Furthermore, ethnic and racial group differences I the sectors may be the outcome of differential assignments of group members within the sectoral structure of the economic order.
There are three questions that the authors seek to answer:
1.) Are there differences in the labor force composition of the core and periphery sectors?
2.) Can differences in individual earnings between sectors be accounted for in terms of the individuals located within those sectors?
3.) How similar are the processes of earnings determination for core and periphery sectors?
In order to answer these questions, Beck, et al. perform empirical analyses on data from the 1975 and 1976 General Social Surveys. The sample consisted of 1,683 members of the experienced civilian labor force. The independent variables were:
1.) Human Capital Variables: parental education and occupational prestige, age, respondent's education (investment)
2.) Demographic Variables: gender and race
3.) Occupational Variables: occupational prestige, union membership, employment status, work stability, and industrial sector (core vs. periphery)
The dependent variables were the natural logarithm of annual earnings and a binary variable coded for earnings below the poverty threshold.
Answers to above questions:
1.) There are important differences in the labor force composition , work experiences, and earnings of the sectors. Core workers have larger, more homogeneous annual earnings than do periphery workers. They also have, on the average, more schooling, better educational credentials, parents with better education and higher occupational status, and they are more likely to be male and white than female and non-white. Also, core members are more likely to be in higher prestige occupations, to be employed full time, to work more hours per week, and to belong to a union.
2.) There are persistent sectoral differences in economic outcomes which cannot be explained by the racial, sexual, human capital, or occupational characteristics of their respective labor forces. hence a change in sectoral placement without altering the se characteristics of the average periphery worker, would yield a substantial increase in annual earnings.
3.) Within the core sector there is evidence of significant adverse race and gender main effects on the earnings even after controlling human capital and occupational variables, while there is no significant evidence of this in the peripheral sector. The process of earning determination differs between sectors even when the analysis is restricted to full-time employed white males. Among white males, sectoral placement makes a critical difference in economic well-being above and beyond the effects of differences in labor force quality. This persistent disparity must be attributed to the structural organization of the industrial economy.
We should be very suspicious of any attempts to build models of occupational earnings processes in industrial society which consists exclusively on individual-level variables. Contrary to human capital and status attainment models, rates of return are not fixed and one important determinant of their variability is a distinction between sectors. Beck, et al. acknowledge that this dichotomous model is rather simplistic, but they see it as a starting point to link individual socioeconomic behavior to models of the industrial structure.
Inequality and Heterogeneity
Variations in the sized of groups and the number of incumbents of social positions constitute basic structural conditions which affect and reflect people's role relations and social associations.
Macrosociologically, a social structure can be defined as the multidimensional space of social position among which a population is distributed and which reflect and affect people's role relations and social associations. The most distinctive task of sociology is the structural analysis of various forms of differentiation (such as heterogeneity and inequality), their interrelations, the conditions producing them and changes in them, and their implications for social relations.
Heterogeneity - or horizontal differentiation - refers to the distribution of a population among groups in terms of a nominal parameter. The operational criterion of the degree of heterogeneity in a population is the probability that two randomly chosen persons do not belong to the same group.
Inequality - or vertical differentiation - refers to the status distribution in a population in terms of a graduated parameter. The operational criterion is that the greater the average status distance between all pairs of persons relative to their average status, the greater the inequality.
Status-diversity is the graduated-parameter equivalent of heterogeneity. The operational criterion of status-diversity is the probability that two randomly chosen persons do not belong to the same stratum.
For any dichotomy of society, the extent of intergroup relations is an inverse function of group size, ex:
1. the proportion of groups members intermarried
2. the mean number of intergroup associates
3. the mean amount of time spent in intergroup associations
4. the proportion of group members not insulated from the other group
Most members of a group the constitute a large majority have no close associate in small minority groups. The more a majority discriminates in social intercourse against a minority, the smaller is the discrepancy between the majority's lower and the minority's higher rate of intergroup associations.
High rates of mobility between groups promote high rates of association between their nonmobile as well as their mobile members. Net out mobility increases a group's interrelations more than net mobility. A parameter's pronounced salience inhibits social mobility. Increased rates of mobility among groups reduce a parameter's salience.
Status distributions are nearly always positively skewed, with a majority of the population occupying less than average status and small numbers occupying status that is far above average.
For any discussion of status above the median, the upper status has more extensive relations with the lower than the lower has with the upper. Most people are insulated from social contacts with the elite. Except for the lowest strata, the probability of people's associating with others below their status is greater than the probability of their associating with others equidistant above them.
Downward mobility of any highest stratum diminishes inequality, unless its effect on the status distribution is outweighed by those of upward mobility of other highest, downward mobility of low or middle strata, differences in net fertility, or in net immigration.
As race social practices in a group increase in frequency, group pressures that discourage them subside.
Ceteris paribus, the larger of two groups discriminates more than the smaller against associating with members of the other group. Increasing heterogeneity increases the probability of intergroup relations. The spatial segregation of groups counters the positive effect of heterogeneity on intergroup relations.
Intersecting parameters improve the integration of various groups by raising the rates of association between their members; increase structural complexity (nominal - heterogeneity; graduated - status diversity) and social mobility thereby promoting structural change. As group size in terms of one parameter declines, the probability of intergroup relations in terms of other intersecting parameters increases. Consequently, the smaller the size of a group, the greater is the probability that its members have cosmopolitan role sets.
The less graduated parameters intersect, the greater is the inequality. Consolidated graduated parameters attenuate the rates of social association among different strata and thus weaken their integration. Consolidated parameters inhibit social mobility and structural change.
PETER BLAU AND OTIS DUNCAN
The American Occupational Structure
Blau and Duncan assert in the first paragraph the importance of this study of mobility for understanding modern industrial society, particularly its stratified character: ''In a democratic country where equality of opportunity - though never perfectly realized - is an important ideal, the question of the extent to which the class or ethnic group into which an individual is born furthers or hinders his career chances is of special theoretical as well as political significance'' (p. viii). Their objectives in this book are to analyze:
1. the patterns of occupational movem
2. the conditions that affect the patterns
3. the consequences of those patterns ..... in the stratification system of the US.
THEORY AND MOBILITY RESEARCH
Many social thinkers have tackled the problem of social change in general and the impact of this change on the role of class differentiation in particular. Two notable thinkers are Marx and Durkheim. Marx asserted that class conflict is the prime force generating historical change; and Durkheim stated that occupational differentiation lessened consensus within society and hence altered the nature of social solidarity. The problem with these theories is that empirical investigation is difficult at best. Weber perhaps made the most headway concerning class structure in his famous distinction between class, status, and political party, for he calls particular attention t the different dimensions of social stratification. He does concede (like Marx) the importance of economic classes in differentiation, but he focuses on the possession of property in the form of capital as the determining factor in life chances. People are also differentiated on the dimension of social honor or prestige, and people of similar prestige share a distinctive style of life and accept each other as social equals. The third distinction brought forth by Weber is that the roles individuals play in the struggle among parties for political power are another force in stratification -- and are differentiated from both class position and prestige status. Weber's enlarged conceptual formulation of stratification lays the theoretical foundation for Blau and Duncan, who measure Weber's formulation through the occupational position of individuals.
OCCUPATIONAL POSITION AND STRATIFICATION
A person's occupational position is not identical to either economic class of prestige, but is obviously closely related to both. Class, as conceived by Marx, is defined in terms of economic resources and interests, and for the majority of men occupation is the best indicator of these. Since modern society is dominated by corporations, the role an individual has with respect to a corporation (or more accurately, the amount of managerial influence an individual has on economic concerns) is a better indicator of class than the amount of resources or interests. Thus occupation does not capture all aspects of economic class, but it is probably the best single indicator of it. Similarly, concerning social prestige, occupational position is useful in that many occupational pursuits (notably those involving physical labor) are incompatible with the ''honor'' of belonging to the higher prestige strata. Thus the occupational structure not only contains the main dimensions of stratification, but it also serves as the connecting link between different institutions and spheres of social life. ''The hierarchy of prestige strata and the hierarchy of economic classes have their roots in the occupational structure; so does the hierarchy of political power and authority'' (p. 7). Hence, the occupational position of persons, and the mobility of persons across occupations, gives great insight into stratification and class differentiation.
The specific goals of Blau and Duncan concerning this book are to compare the findings concerning mobility in this society with those found in studies in Great Britain, Sweden, and Denmark, and the like. The authors also wish to study how certain factors of social origin such as race, number of siblings, migration vs. indigenous, community size, etc, affect occupational achievement.
METHODOLOGY AND DATA COLLECTION
B and D utilize the CPS from the 1950 census which interviewed 20,700 respondents who represent the 45 million men aged 20 to 64 years old in the US. Because sample size is so large, any small difference that is somewhat interesting will be statistically significant, and thus significance test are not utilized.
The overall question that B and D try to answer in this chapter is how the various ascribed statuses (social origins) that man bring to their careers affect their achieved status in the occupational structure. In particular, the role of education as an intervening link between ascribed status and occupational achievement is treated extensively. The major part of this chapter, though, concerns the methodological problems associated with statistical techniques that require strong a priori assumptions.
MEASURING THE STATUS OF OCCUPATION
Understanding occupational mobility is a complicated process because the occupational structure intersects with other structures, such as industry, and is differentiated by a variety of factors including region, locality, ethnic group, etc. The authors thus simplify the analysis by focusing on vertical mobility, but do not deny that other processes operate.
In the past, two approaches to analyzing the occupational hierarchy have been used:
-the effort to develop a socioeconomic classification scheme for occupations, usually with a composite index of education and income levels of workers in each occupational category.
-public opinion surveys of the ratings of the general standing or prestige of selected occupations, several of which have been shown to be remarkably similar.
Blau and Duncan found that 91% of the variance in prestige rankings from the surveys could be explained by a summary measure of education and income. So they used the education and income information from the 1950 census to construct their scale of occupational status and ended up with two-digit status scores ranging from 0 to 96 for 466 detailed occupational titles.
They also approached the issue of occupational status change over time by looking at occupational prestige from 1925 to 1963 and found no major changes for the nearly 40-year period.
B and D assume that the occupation structure is continuously graded in regard to status as opposed to being of discrete status classes, since the occupations overlap on a number of variables like distribution of income, educational attainment, measured intelligence, etc.
CONCLUSIONS ABOUT EDUCATION
Education as a case of a mobility distribution is discussed in detail at the end of the chapter. The substantive findings are as follows:
1. The chances for upward mobility increase steadily with increased education.
2. The proportion who move up a long distance form their social origins are 8% of those with less than 5 years of education, and 53% of those with some postgraduate work.
3. Immobility corresponds to decreasing educational attainment.
4. Men with an intermediate amount of education (at least 8 years of compulsory education, but have not finished college) experience considerable downward mobility from their social origins, which are relatively high.
CONDITIONS OF OCCUPATIONAL SUCCESS
The main factor that determines a man's chances of upward mobility is the level in which he starts. It is to be expected that the lower the level from which a person starts, the greater is the probability that he will move up, simply because more occupational levels are above him than below. The question must therefore be decomposed in order to get a substantive answer.
The decomposition of the question yields the result that a man's social origins (his father's status) has considerable influence on his chances of occupational upward mobility, but his own training and early experience have a stronger influence on his chances of success. As a man gets older, however, the significance of is past career for his present career increases and the influence of his social origins, education, and first job decrease.
MINORITY GROUPS AND MOBILITY
The significance of other conditions such as ethnic background is not independent of the influences of social origins, education, and first job. Low social origins are, however, an impediment to success, but the effects are not always cumulative, as the vicious cycle of poverty argument suggests. Instead, the combined effects of low income, poor education, many siblings, etc are usually found to be redundant, not cumulative. The cases of three minority groups illustrate the difference between redundant and cumulative effects.
Blacks are handicapped at every step in their attempts at occupational success, and these cumulative disadvantages are what keep them in their inferior economic position. Even with the same social origins and education of a white male, a black still has lesser chances of upward mobility, apparently as a result of discrimination.
White Southerners, on the other hand, come from lower social origins than their Northern counterparts, and have less education but these effects are not cumulative. When the factors of social origins, education, and first job are controlled for, Southerners have the same chances of occupational success as do Northerners. The same cannot be said for blacks.
Sons of white ethnic immigrants also have lower social origins and less education than whites born of native parentage, but occupational achievements of sons of immigrants are as high as those of native-born parentage. The one significant finding is that sons of northern and western European immigrants are slightly better than those of southern and eastern European immigrants.
MIGRATION AND MOBILITY
In general, men who migrate either from their place of birth during childhood or after age 16 from the community where they were raised, achieve higher occupational status than nonmigrants. Also, regardless of the size of the place in which a migrant works, the more urbanized the community was where he was raised, the higher the occupational status he attains. The authors attribute these findings to the nature of modern, urban society.
FAMILY AND OCCUPATIONAL LIFE
A few findings:
-broken families spell lower occupational achievement for both children and husband
-many siblings are an occupational handicap, although the effects are worse for the oldest children, less so for the middle children, and even less for the youngest.
-youngest and oldest siblings are in general more successful than middle siblings
-family attitude toward education is an important factor, and a strong, positive family attitude increases a son's chances of occupational success.
OCCUPATIONAL STRUCTURE AND HISTORICAL TRENDS
Only the categories of farming, farm laborer, and laborers have experienced a decrease in their numbers since the beginning of this century. All other categories have increased their numbers to some extent.
There is much upward mobility in the US, but most of it involves short distances up the hierarchy. The increase in positions in the professional strata and their accompanying low fertility rates, combined with a decrease in the lower farm occupations and their high fertility, have created a demand at the top and a pressure at the bottom which increase a man's likelihood to experience upward mobility.
OPPORTUNITY AND DEMOCRACY
The authors concur with the Lipset and Bendix conclusion that rates of mobility in the US are not unique with respect to industrialized countries.
Distinction --- ''The Sense of Distinction'' (chp 5)
Bordieu begins this chapter with an overview of how he thinks society is stratified. The dominant class is ''an autonomous space whose structure is defined by the distribution of economic and cultural capital among its members.'' There are fractions within each class which correspond to different lifestyles through the habitus. The habitus is a system of choices that are influenced by inherited asset structures. Furthermore, different sets of preferences come from systems of dispositions and the social conditions of production which create relationships between them (the systems of dispositions).
For a good part of the remainder of this chapter, Bordieu discusses taste, particularly why the predilection for cultural practices increases with a decrease in economic means. First , Bordieu establishes that the volume of capital (he doesn't specify which kind here) constitutes the principle division of practices and preferences. Bordieu explains that cultural practices ''increase'' when economic capital decreases because those with fewer economic means try to get the maximum culture for their money. On the other hand, the rich must always have the best, the most classic, and the most widely known. No avant garde theatre for them.
Throughout this chapter, Bordieu uses teachers as representatives of those with an interest in high culture and low economic means, and industrial/commercial employers for those who would go for run-of-the-mill culture that's really expensive. These rich employer types like to appropriate art for the sake of having it. When one appropriates a work of art in this manner, he assets himself as the exclusive owner of the object and the taste for that object. He ''negates all those unworthy of appropriating that object'' (280). The appropriation of art is a symbol of status for the rich because it shows off that they have time to waste on such frivolities, or would go to ''any expense'' to own such a beautiful work or art.
On the other hand, the dominated classes must appropriate symbolically, be it through knowledge of art, a cheap reprint, etc. Often, they recreate what is thought of as art for their community (intellectuals, artists). They turn pop-culture artifacts such as graffiti and cartoons into distinguished works of culture.
For those with low economic capital, gaining educational capital can help them gain cultural capital (teachers). These people's tastes become opposed to the luxury tastes of ''professionals.'' Because teachers don't have the means to materially obtain things which reflect their cultural taste, they develop ''aesthetic asceticism.'' (289) Their ethical choices reflect their aesthetic choices. (ie liking Sartre means being a left winger). They protest the social order that restricts their entry into the bourgeoisie and the world of luxury art. Whereas their art and world views reflect social pessimism, the art and world view of the rich reflect sumptuousness and social optimism. Intellectuals expect art to challenge social reality, and the bourgeois expect it to deny social reality.
Just as the dominated and dominant classes oppose each other, fractions within the dominant classes oppose each other as well. Each competing group tries to impose the legitimate principle of domination. The dominant class can only ensure its perpetuation if it can overcome crises that arise from factions competing to impose the dominant principle. Each fraction within the dominant class has itsown world views and mode of living. The fractions have different interests, careers, and even habitus. (These are all issues of taste). Their conflicts represent attempts to impose the dominant principle of domination, as well as secure the ''conversion rate'' for the type of capital with which each group is best provided.
Currently, there is tension between the new bourgeoisie and the old bourgeoisie. Today's credit economy best accommodates the new bourgeoisie, who consume greatly and are the vendors of symbolic goods and services such as cinema and fashion. Whereas the old bourgeoisie represents formality and conservatism, the new bourgeoisie is relaxed, highly educated, and active.
The different forms of capital, the possession of which defines class membership and power, also determine the strategies available for use in intra (and inter I assume) class struggles. Once, 'birth, future, and talent' were stakes in the struggle for power, but they have been replaced by economic, educational, and cultural capital. They are not equally powerful, however. (I think Bordieu is implying here that economic capital is most powerful here). Intellectuals and artists sit in a precarious position on society, between ''disinterestedness'' (typical of poor artists and grad students) and ''high values'' (typical of elites). Artists especially have to cater to the interests of the rich in order to be patronized and make money to live on.
Pierre Bourdieu --- Distinction
Conclusion: Classes and Classifications
Taste is an acquired disposition to differentiate and appreciate. It marks differences by a process of distinction which is not a distinct knowledge. It functions as a sort of social orientation, implying a practical anticipation of what the social meaning or values of the chose practice or thing will probably be.
All knowledge of the social world is an act of construction implementing schemes of thought and expression. Between the conditions of existence, there intervenes the structuring activity of the agents who respond to the invitations or threats of a world whose meaning they have helped to produce (habitus). The principle of this structuring activity is not a system of universal categories but a system of internalized schemes which having been constituted collectively and historically are acquired in the course of individuals' practical lives.
Embodied Social Structures;
Social science in constructing the social world takes note of the fact that agents are the subject of acts of construction of the social world. But social science also aims to describe the social genesis of the principles of construction. All agents in a given social formation share a set of basic perceptual schemes which receive the beginnings of objectification in pairs of antagonistic adjectives. The ultimate source of this network is the opposition between the dominating elite and the dominated mass. The same classificatory schemes can function in whole fields organized in polar oppositions. These schemes are particularly applicable to one field, but are transferable to others because of all the homologies between fields.
Knowledge without Concepts:
Social divisions become principles of division organizing the image of the social world. Objective limits become a sense of limits. The sense of limits implies forgetting the limits. The primary experience of the social world is the doxa: an adherence to relations of order which because they structure inseparably both the real work and the thought world are accepted as self-evident. The dominated adjust their expectations to their chances (Durkheim's logical conformity).
The sense of the social structure (taste) is far removed from an act of cognition. Everything takes place as if the social conditionings linked to a social condition tended to inscribe the relation to the social world in relation to the bodily hexus. The ultimate values are never anything other than the primary dispositions of the body, visceral tastes in which the groups' most vital interests are embedded. The sense of distinction which demands that certain things be brought together and others kept apart responds with horror to everything which passes understanding and flouts common sense.
The classificatory scheme which fixes limits is not so much a means of knowledge as a means of power. It is harnessed to social functions and aimed at satisfying the interests of a group. The interest which individuals and groups invest in classificatory systems encompasses their whole social being and defines ''us'' as opposed to ''them.'' This scheme is the basis of the exclusion and inclusion individuals perform among the characteristics produced by the common classificatory system.
Social identity lies in difference.
The Classification Struggle:
What is at stake in the struggles about the meaning of the social world is power over the classificatory schemes and systems which are the basis of the representations of groups and therefore of their mobilization. Only in struggle do the internalized limits become boundaries and barriers that have to be moved. And the system of classification is only institutionalized when it has ceased to function as a sense of limits so the guardians of order must constitute the doxa as orthodoxy.
The fate of groups is bound up with the words that designate them. The power to impose recognition depends on the capacity to mobilize around a name (''proletariat'').
The Reality of Representation and the Representation of Reality:
Symbolic property is a property perceived in relation to other properties of the same class by agents equipped with socially constituted schemes of perception.
We have to move beyond the opposition between objectivist theories, which identify social classes as discrete groups, and subjectivist theories, which reduce the social order to a sort of collective classification obtained by aggregating the individual strategies (classified and classifying) through which agents categorize themselves and others. A class is defined as much by its being-perceived as by its being, by its consumption as much as by its position in the relations of production. Lastly, individuals' positions in the classification struggles depend on their positions in the class structure.
The Challenge of Segmented Labor Market Theories to Orthodox Theory: A Survey
For an economist this guy isn't too bad. He is a little sneaky, though. I read through a good bit of the paper before I could tell which side of the proverbial segmented/orthodox fence he was going to come down on (orthodox - and he doesn't actually say himself until the end of the paper. If you check the first page of the citations you'll see that this guy makes a career out of papers titled ''The Challenge of _______ Theory to Orthodox Theory.'' Nevertheless, this paper is good at summarizing various economic schools that we might run across in sociology.
Segmented Labor Market (SLM) theories began to emerge in the 1960's, as it and its proponents were wrapped up in the general radical spirit of the decade. SLM came to be seen as a contender for prominence within the field of labor economics - the reigning champ being the Neoclassical School.
Neoclassical Economics has two main components: 1) marginal productivity theory of demand - profit maximization of employers and 2) labor-supply theory - utility maximization of workers. SLM challenges the Neoclassical position with respect to method, theory, and its predictions and substantive hypothesis - basically the whole shootin' match.
Empirical Generalizations about Outcomes of the Labor Market
There are two type of empirical findings the lead to the SLM challenge to orthodox theory: 1) those that indicate some form of hardship or distress (eg. poverty or unemployment) and 2) ''puzzles'' that represent problem areas in which neoclassical economists are either baffled or unable to treat properly. There are a number of specific social problems that Cain elaborates on as being central to the development and support of SLM analysis:
--the persistence of poverty despite a variety of policy initiatives
--the persistence of income inequality: stability of the shape of income distribution despite the narrowing of variance in education attainment (for example)
--failure of education and training programs: he calls Jim Coleman's work ''pessimistic'' about thirty or forty times over the course of the paper, and claims that neoclassical economists consistently find a positive relationship between years of schooling and earnings.
--employer use of educational and training criteria for making ''irrational'' and ''discriminatory'' hiring decisions:this is basically the screening argument
--discrimination in labor markets: ''if neoclassical theory is so great, how do you explain consistent discrimination of women and minorities?'' Four recent empirical findings are particularly pertinent:
~decline in black male labor force participation rates relative to white males
~near-constant black:white average male income from 1950-1966
~decline in black:white income with higher educational attainment
~flat age-earnings profile of black males relative to white males
~stagnant trend in earning and occupational attainments of women relative to men
--levels, trends, and structure of unemployment
--roles of monopolies, unions, and other sources of ''protected'' labor markets: support dual labor market concept
--alienation of American workers: the balance that neoclassical theories predict should develop between worker's pecuniary and non-pecuniary reward has not actually arisen - causing psychological dissatisfaction
New Theories of Segmented Labor Markets
1). Job Competition Theory (Thurow, Lucas)
Closest to the orthodox position, with two major elements: a) number and type of job slots are technologically determined, and 2) worker's skills (human capital) and their wage offers are nearly irrelevant in determining the number and type of job positions actually filled. In addition: c) wages are rigid - queues of workers at fixed wages constitute the supply of labor, and d) employers use screening devices to hire workers based on trainability and adaptability. The theory emphasizes within-firm (internal) labor markets as the locus of labor decisions
2). The Dual Theory (Piore, Doeringer, Bluestone, Harrision, McCartney, Lennon, and Ringo)
Part of this strain involves the observation that within-firm (internal) labor markets may develop which maintain a high degree of insulation from the general (external) conditions of the economy. Similar is the distinction between primary (good, high-paying, stable jobs with promotion potential in large firms or unionized areas) and secondary labor markets (bad, low-paying, unstable dead-end jobs that discriminated workers often get stuck with). This school often resembles ''culture of poverty'' arguments, in as far as they address ''life-styles'' of worker that may make them prone to occupying certain jobs. These SLM economists, however, suggest that these tastes may be the result of labor market experience.
3). Radical Theory (Wachtel, Edwards, Teich, Gordon, Franklin and Resnick, Bowles and Gintis, Kitchen Sink)
This flavor of SLM theory involves a more explicit critique of capitalism and has strong ties with Marxian dialectical analysis complete with emphasis on class conflict.
As far as SLM policy implications go, there are two major directions: 1) focus on the demand side of the labor market - public employment, wage subsidy, anti- discrimination; with deemphasis or rejection of supply-side remedies such as education and training programs, and 2) a more general reorganization of schools and other community organizations promoted by more radical economists who advocate more worker control of the labor process.
HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE FOR SLM
Cain tries to put SLM in perspective by citing examples of similar lines of thought in the past. The first goes all the way back to John Stuart Mill. Mill criticizes Adam Smith's notion that relatively less desirable jobs will be rewarded with higher pay (this one of the TS readings from the theory section). Mill basically says that Smith is wrong because in reality (and pardon my French) shitty job = shitty pay - this is actually referred to as non-competing groups. Mill thinks that more education and lower birth rate among the lower classes could potentially remedy this situation.
Marxist Economics is the second ''forerunner'' to SLM. From this tradition (particularly its notion of a reserve army of labor and the injurious character of competition), SLM analyses recognize the allocative role of factor payments, heterogeneity in the workforce (exploitation of the working class), sources of worker alienation that derive from bureaucratic social control as well as production, and an emphasis on class conflict and employer collusion. With Institutional Economics, SLM shares objections to the marginal productivity theories that determine equilibrium outcomes in models assuming perfect competition, as well as a distaste for the abstract theorizing of orthodox perspectives. From the Neoinstitutionalists (the economists of the 1940's and 50's, not the namby-pamby, mealy-mouthed bunch that hang out with DiMaggio and Powell) SLM gleaned a skeptical view of neoclassical models of perfect competition, the rational ''economic man,'' money-maximizing behaviors of firms and households - much of which derived from analysis of ''anti-competitive'' institutions like bureaucratic firms and unions that produce internal labor markets. Keynesian theory (whatever exactly that is - Cain assumes you know) was not a major influence to SLM (so i guess it doesn't matter if we know what it is or not. Finally, SLM agrees with the Structuralists of the 60s and 70s that the free market plus conventional policies were unable to produce stability and reward the secondary labor force.
MODERN NEOCLASSICAL RESPONSE TO THE SEGMENTED LABOR MARKET CHALLENGE
In this portion of the paper, Cain begins to show his true colors, but is generally realistic about the limitations and weak links of the neoclassical position. He responds to SLM criticism on a number of grounds:
Theory: despite SLM criticism to the contrary, neoclassical economics (NCE) may legitimately omit model variables that define or represent preferences, laws and institutions if: 1) the variables under investigation are worth studying in their own right, 2) model is used in a context where unmeasured variables are either constant or do not significantly effect the variables under investigation (how you would actually really know the latter without measurement, I have no idea), and 3) cost of adding extra variables exceeds the benefits of greater accuracy of the model
Method: while SLM accuses NCE (sorry for all the initials) of attachment to a single parameter - marginal productivity as a determinate of wages, Cain says that the orthodox view actually emphasizes demand conditions in short-run contexts and supply-side in the long-run.
Empirical-Theoretical Issues: Implications for Research and Policy
Occupational boundaries and mobility: without going into much detail, Cain suggests that SLM proponents are yet to present convincing empirical evidence for the existence of dual/segmented labor markets either in terms of a characteristic distribution of occupations along a qualitative dimension or in terms of lack of mobility between primary and secondary occupational groupings. He does, however, cite NCE evidence against dual/segmented markets.
Discrimination: Cain proposes that the analytic distinction between wage discrimination and job discrimination can be eliminated by recognizing that discrimination may be effected by unfavorable job assignments. Basically - in a context with heterogeneous skills (jobs) and wage dispersion, wage and job discrimination can be made equivalent by defining each wage-skill level as an ''occupation'' (or ''job''). There are a few kinds of neoclassical approaches to the topic of discrimination: deterministic competitive theories: reflect ''tastes'' against a definable group and are not very fruitful; statistical theories: assume that employers hire, place, pay workers on the basis of imperfect information under conditions of uncertainty. While these theories are useful for examining discrimination in ad hoc conditions, they do not translate well to explaining large measures of discrimination; noncompetitive models: outline some conditions under which discrimination could occur in light of a NCE framework - namely: monopoly, unions, or monopsy. SLM perspectives have, on the other hand, tended to elaborate on the above NCE models with a special emphasis on collusive and collective behavior - which include attention to divide-and-conquer strategies by employers that forestall collective action against them, rigid wages, and a ''self-perpetuating syndrome'' where secondary jobs tend to promote bad work habits. Cain admits that the NCE offerings are less than ideal, but that the SLM options are even less appealing, and he proceeds to offer a variety of empirical evidence that supports the orthodox position over that of SLM. Some highlights:
If you view the recent black urbanization as immigration their pace of economic advancement is not so bad.
Economic disadvantage could be the result of pre-labor market discrimination, rather than lack of progress
once in the market itself (this could apply to ethnic minorities as well as women).
theory of ''role discrimination'': ''comparative advantage'' and ''gains from specialization'' may lie behind the stability of a household division of labor between market/home work; with respect to human capital issues:
the amount of market-oriented investment will be less for those who expect to spend less time in the labor market (by this he means women)
effect of education on male-female differences in earnings are difficult to interpret since the value of non-market
work time (particularly for women) is ignored
Unemployment: Cain takes exception with the SLM emphasis on the ''lack of good jobs'' in the secondary labor market - in effect he thinks that people are unemployed because the jobs that are available to them are unacceptable for one reason or another. Thus ''good'' is a relative term. He advocates treating the problem of involuntary employment instability the same as other unfavorable traits of jobs and workers - such as low pay, poor working conditions, limited fringe benefits, etc. Cain presents several NCE hypotheses concerning unemployment
a. alternative sources of labor: non-labor sources of support available during unemployment lowers the cost of unemployment. Here such factors as public assistance, illegitimate sources of income (ie crime), etc. should be factored into an examination of unemployment in the secondary labor market.
b. labor as a quasi-fixed factor of production: this deals with differential unemployment by skill class; since on-the-job-training represents an investment by the employer, a firm will be less likely to layoff a highly-skilled worker in the case of an economic downturn
c. job search models: approach used to analyze the behavior of unemployed workers; assume that the search continues as long as the marginal benefits of further search exceed the marginal cost. This model is not yet, however, sufficiently developed for empirical work.
Protected labor markets and wage rigidities: in responding to SLM critiques, many orthodox economists relax the assumptions of perfect competition and price (or wage) flexibility. In doing so, NCE bears a more considerable correspondence to SLM views. NCE recognized the existence of ''protected'' markets in certain instances that roughly correspond to SLM's dual labor market theory. NCE does not, however, extend the dual market to the entire economy. As for wage rigidity Cain suggests that SLM's view of wage rigidity lacks exactness which lessens the strength of its challenge to NCE. Although the orthodox position normally requires market wage flexibility beyond short-run transitory periods, absence of wage movements in the presence of shifts in supply or demand may occur in cases where the cost of making the wage change is sufficiently large.
Human capital models in education and training: Cain finds fault with the ''pessimistic'' body of educational research and their assessments of various programs: 1) lack of a credible, implementable theory of educational development, 2) preoccupation with a program's contribution to explained variance of educational achievement - which he feels is an irrelevant criteria for policy purposes, and 3) the pessimistic findings deal primarily with quality of education rather than quantity (the latter of which shows more optimistic results). With respect to training programs, Cain suggests that the negative evaluation of contemporary efforts are biases since they are compared to earlier programs whose effectiveness was overstated.
Lastly, Cain believes that the emphasis of SLM proponents on lower economic classes to examine educational attainment left them prone to a wide-spread methodological flaw. Briefly, by examining primarily lower class people, they attempt to fit regression to a sample truncated on the values of the dependent variable (earnings) in such a way as biases the estimates of effect for the independent variables (eg. educational attainment). Overall, this practice lessens the relationship between the i.v. (education) and d.v. (earnings) and accounts for SLM findings that human capital variables do not effect income. In the end Cain concludes that the empirical support for SLM does not warrant rejection of the orthodox position. He does think, on the other hand, that SLM does offer ''constructive criticism'' of the neoclassical position and points to areas where improvements can be made - especially as pertains to endogenous determination of attitudinal variables among workers, historical and institutional dimensions of internal labor markets (cf economics of bureaucratic organization), and attention to class interests and behavior.
Class and Class Conflict in Industrial Society
The origin of the word class is Roman, when the censors used the word classis to divide up the population for tax purposes. With the industrial revolution, the history of the concept of class as a tool of social analysis began. In discussion of pre-capitalist societies, such as late Feudalism, concepts like class and rank had been used synonymously. However, as capital, property became transformed from a symbol of rank to an instrument of power growing steadily in strength and effectiveness.
Distinctions of rank in preindustrial societies rested on myths of tradition and age-old systems of rights and duties, as much as on crude gradations of property, power, and prestige. The early stages of industrialization involved both a change in the personnel of social positions and the simultaneous abolition of the system of norms and values which guaranteed and legitimized the order of preindustrial society. The industrial revolution created, surprisingly soon after bursting on to the scene (what an image), two rapidly growing strata for which there was no precedent: the entrepreneurs and the workers (the bourgeoisie and the proletariate, if you like those terms better). These strata had grown up together and neither had a natural or traditional unity as a strata. It was for these strata, bare of traditions and differentiated merely by external, almost material criteria, that the concept of class was first used in modern social sciences.
Marx believed the theory of class so important, that he postponed its systematic exposition so long that he fell over dead without writing it. In fact, the last chapter of the last volume of Capital bears the title, ''The Classes,'' and is unfinished.
However, since Dahrendorf and lots of other people have read all of Marx's work many times and thought about it a great deal, D is going to infer from other works what Marx would have written had he not fallen over dead. This inferred exhibition follows.
''The Classes: The unwritten 52nd Chapter of Volume III of Marx's Capital.''
The revolution is not the product of economic forces of production or relations of production, but of the people and groups that represent these economic formations. Of all instruments of production the greatest force of production is the revolutionary class itself. We are concerned not with describing any one society, but with the laws which determine the trend of general development.
Our first question is: What are the elements on which classes are based? Since modern bourg. society is our society of interest, we'll use it as our example. Laborers, landowners and capitalists, who live off wages, rent, and profits, respectively, are the three great classes of modern society based on a capitalist mode of production. The permanent tendency of capitalist mode of production is to increasingly separate the means of production from labor, and to concentrate the sperate means of production more and more in large groups—in other words, to transform labor into wage labor and the means of production into capital. At the same time, land ownership tends to be separated from capital and labor, and to be converted into the type of land ownership corresponding to the capitalist mode of production.
What constitutes a class?
NOT 1) identity of revenues and sources of income. If this were the case, doctors and civil servants, who get their incomes from different places, would be two different classes. It is also NOT 2) ''difference in the size of purses.'' The division of labor has created very different types of work within the same class.
The essential point is: Property, income and the source of income are the RESULT of the class structure. Income and property belong to the realm of distribution and consumption. The use of products is determined by the social relations of consumers, and these social relations themselves rest on the conflict of classes. Distribution is itself a product of production. The kind of participation in production DETERMINES the particular patterns of distribution, the way in which people participate in distribution. We must look for the elements of classes in production and in the power relations determined by it.
Property and Economic Power
The essential condition that determines the mode of production of an epoch (and therefore provides the constituent element of classes as well as the momentum of social change) is property. However, the opposition of propertylessness and property as such is not expressed as a contraction so long as it is not comprehended as the opposition between labor and capital. Only if we understand property in the particular context of bourgeois society, as private ownership of the means of production, do we in fact grasp the core of the antagonism existing in production and creating class conflict.
The existence of capital as well as wage labor can be explained in terms of the one condition of the particular form of property in bourgeois society, that is, ownership of the means of production. The authority relations within production are of course not the class relations themselves. In order to determine these, we have to look for the consequences flowing from the relations of production and for the social antagonisms based on these consequences.
Relations of Production, Class Situation and Political Power
The division of wealth in the sphere of distribution corresponds to the division of power in production. Thus a person's material condition of existence, or class situation, is based on his position in production. The economic conditions of existence are not in themselves sufficient for the formation of classes: they produce a gap between the life situations of workers and capitalists, but they do not produce a real antagonism. The distribution of property in production determines the distribution of political power in society. The modern state is an association that administrates the common business of the whole bourgeois class. In this sense, authority relations in production determine the authority relations of society in general. The distribution of property in production also shapes the ideas that mold the character of a period. That character (sentiments, illusions, modes of thought) is the foam of the superstructure which rides upon the wave of the material foundations and their corresponding social relations. The class that has the means of material production in its control , controls at the same time the means of intellectual production.
Individuals form a class only in so far as they are engaged in a common struggle with another class. The force that effects class formation is class interest. In a sense, class interest preceded the formation of classes. For example, the proletariate has, in the beginning of its development, certain common interest, but it is nevertheless still an unorganized mass. It is already a class in opposition to capital, but it is not yet a class for itself.
Class interests as ''objective'' interests subsuming the members of a class under a general force not only can differ from individual, personal interests, but can conflict with these interests. Two particular interests are increasingly articulated: the revolutionary interests of the working class and the conservative interests of the bourg. On the basis of these class interests, in fighting to realize them or defend them, the groups determined by the distribution of property in production, and by the distribution of political power flowing form it, organize themselves into classes.
Class Organization and Class Struggle
The development of the forces of production has to be far advanced for the formation of classes to be possible, because the organization of the revolutionary elements as a force presupposes the complete existence of all forces of production which could possibly develop in the womb of the old society. The formation of classes always means the organization of common interests in the sphere of politics. Classes are political groups united by a common interests. Thus, the struggle between two classes is a political struggle.
Parallel with the political organization of classes there grows up a theoretical class-consciousness, and awareness on the individual's part of the interests of his class generally. Thus, classes are political forces based on the relations of property and power. There is circulation between the prols and the bourg., an exchange of personnel among them. Afterall, the more capable a ruling class is of absorbing the best men of the oppressed class, the more solid and dangerous is its rule [RLS: why would it want the women, after all?]. Also, immediately preceding a revolution, the process of disintegration within the ruling class and the old society moves some members of the ruling class to defect and join the revolutionaries.
Every class struggle, again, is a political struggle. It is the deliberate and articulate conflict between two opposed interests, of preserving and revolutionizing. The formation of classes as organized interest groups, the antagonizisms between opposing classes, and the resulting revolutionary changes constitute the law of development of all history up to now.
The Classless Society.
After the revolution, there will be no classes. Why? Because the condition of the liberation of the working class is the abolition of every class. Only in an order of things in which there are no classes and no class conflicts will social evolutions cease to be political revolutions.
KINGSLEY DAVIS AND WILBERT MOORE
''Some Principles of Stratification''
Davis and Moore are interested in the relationship between stratification and the rest of the social order. Stratification is defined as the unequal rights and perquisites of different positions in a society. They are interested in the system of positions in society and not the individuals occupying those positions. Their approach is strictly functionalist in that they argue that is a society is to survive, then a functionally efficient means of fitting talented individuals to occupations must develop. Stratification supplies this mechanism.
The Functional Necessity of Stratification:
In order to function, society must:
1.) Motivate the proper members for proper positions
2.) Motivate the persons filling these positions to do the required duties
Motivation is often based on rewards. Types of rewards include:
1.) things that contribute to sustenance and comfort
2.) things that contribute to humor and diversion
3.) things that contribute to self-respect and ego expansion
The rewards used to motivate people and the differential distribution of those awards according to position are part of the social order and give rise to stratification.
The Two Determinants of Positional Rank:
In general, those positions with the best rewards and the highest rank are those which:
1.) have the greatest functional importance - this is a matter of relative significance and is a necessary but not a sufficient determinant of rank
2.) require the greatest training or talent - this is a matter of scarcity and is a sufficient determinant of rank
Major Societal Functions and Stratification:
Religion is important because it ensures unity through the perpetuation of common values and needs among members of a community. In medieval society, the priest was awarded the highest position in society because there was enough economic production to afford a surplus for a numerous and highly organized priesthood, but the populace was illiterate and highly credulous. In advanced society, the priesthood loses status because sacred tradition and supernaturalism lose significance as secular scientific knowledge becomes more important.
Government is important because it organizes society in terms of law and authority. It orients society to the actual rather than the unseen world. Its internal functions include: 1.) ultimate enforcement of norms, 2.) final arbitration of conflicting interests, 3.) overall planning and direction of society. Its external function is the handling of war and diplomacy. Despite its importance, there are many factors (e.g., few government officials, rules and mores, the power of position vs. power of knowledge, etc.) which limit the power of government.
Wealth, Property, and Labor: One of the main indices of social status is the economic return of a position. A position draws a high income because it is functionally important and the available personnel is scarce. The economic source of power and prestige is not income is not income primarily but the ownership of capital goods and the ownership of productive goods (including rights over the labor of others).
Technical Knowledge fulfills the function of finding means to goals without any part in determining goals. From a societal point of view, this can never be as important as the actual integration of goals, so technical positions take a subordinate seat to integrative functions. The methods of recruitment to technical positions (education) and the degree of specialization determine the amount of prestige given to technicians.
Variation in Stratified Systems:
Systems of stratification are not easily categorized. Any stratification system is a composite of its status with reference to the following internal and external conditions.
1.) The degree of specialization determines the fineness between and multiplicity of ranks in power and prestige.
2.) The nature of functional emphasis (e.g., familistic, authoritarian, theocratic, totalitarian, capitalistic, etc.), determine who has rank over whom.
3.) The amount of social distance between positions reflects whether a society emphasizes egalitarian principles or not.
4.) The amount of mobility in a system is determined by its degree of opportunity.
5.) The degree of class solidarity is determined by the presence and strength of specific organizations to promote class interests.
1.) A society's stage of cultural development will determine its degree of specialization, its degree of opportunity, and its functional emphasis.
2.) A society's situation with respect to other societies, such as constant warfare, free trade, isolation, etc., will affect is functional emphasis.
3.) The size of a society will affect its degree of specialization and its degree of class solidarity.
'' Class Structuration and class Consciousness'' 1982
Giddens argues that since Marx, social theory has had significant holes in it with regard as to how economic classes become social classes. He is interested in the mode in which this process occurs and in how social classes in turn are related to other social forms. Giddens begins by stating that he will use the term ''class'' to mean roughly what Weber meant when he used the term ''social class''. He then goes on to discuss what class is NOT. Class is not:
1. A specific entity. a class has no publicly sanctioned identity, it does not act, and it is misleading to think of classes as having members b/c membership implies participation in a defined group.
2. A strata. Strata are gradated and clearly defined with many levels. Classes are not as clearly demarcated from each other, nor are there as many levels as strata implies.
3. Elite. Must distinguish between class and elite. (this is as specific as he gets on this point).
The structuration of class relationships occurs through two different kinds of structuration, mediate and proximate. Mediate structuration is defined as the '' factors which intervene between the existence of certain given market capacities and the formation of identifiable social classes'' (p. 158). Market capacities may be one of three sorts: 1. ownership of property, of means of production, 2. possession of educational or technical qualifications, 3. possession of labor power. Each of these capacities corresponds roughly to the upper, middle, and lower classes, respectively, of a three class system. In general, class structuration is affected by mediate factors through the distribution of mobility chances in a given society. Mobility adversely affects rigid class structure b/c it allows individuals to transcend ascribed class status. Alternately, the less one's chances of mobility, both inter-generational and intra-generational, the more the system approaches closure, which facilitates more clearly identifiable classes and easier system reproduction. The degree to which mobility closure exists is always looked at in relation to any specified form of market capacity. However, Giddens is careful to note that capitalism and the free market system disallow complete mobility closure by their very natures. So how are class systems reproduced so effectively? This brings Giddens to a discussion of proximate structuration.
Proximate structuration is defined as the localized factors which condition or shape the class formations. There are three sources of proximate structuration. 1. the division of labor w/in productive organizations (enterprises) . 2. the authority relationships w/in the enterprise. 3. the influence of the ''distributive group'', defined roughly as the consumptive mechanism which allocates and distributes good in the larger society. The combination of the sources of mediate and proximate structuration create , and later reinforce, a three-class structure in a generic capitalist society.
Giddens then begins a discussion of contradiction and the genesis of class consciousness. In order to do this, he makes the distinction of class consciousness from class awareness. Class awareness is simply recognizing that there exists attitudes and beliefs which are associated with classes, but once one is aware, one is free to accept or deny the validity of said attitudes. Class consciousness begins with the same knowledge of beliefs and attitudes, but it implies also the recognition of class and classes other than one's own. There are various levels of class consciousness. they are:
1. the most undeveloped form : simply a conception and recognition of class identity and class differentiation.
2. class conflict form: there is a perception of class unity linked to recognition of other class(es) whose interests may clash with one's own class's. The difference between this form and the first is the development and processing of latent ideas into conscious ideas.
3. revolutionary class consciousness: ''involves a recognition of the possibility of an overall reorganization in the institutional mediation of power and a belief that such a reorganization can be brought about through class action '' (p. 164).
Let me clarify some of Giddens's terms and arguments here. In analyzing class consciousness, Giddens claims that it is useful to distinguish between conflict and contradiction. Marx used both terms, and Giddens extrapolates from his use of the words. Giddens operationally defines conflict as an opposition of class interests, as in(2) above. Contradiction is used more ideologically to mean a ''discrepancy between an existing and an immanent mode of industrial (w/in an enterprise) control'' (p. 165). Unlike Marx, Giddens does not see revolutionary class consciousness as arising solely from class conflict. The transformation of class conflict into revolutionary class consciousness originates in the contradictions found in industry. Both class conflict and contradiction must be present for revolutionary class consciousness to form. Giddens departs from Marx by asserting that a transformation in class consciousness is not a necessary or guaranteed occurrence.
When all is said and done , Giddens claims that revolutionary class consciousness is most likely to develop in quite a different setting then that which Marx so often emphasized. Giddens posits that there are several factors which influence the development of conflict consciousness, and which will later catalyze the development of revolutionary consciousness. First, there must be visibility of the class structure for conflict consciousness to develop. Later, the most important factor in the development of revolutionary class consciousness is relativity of experience w/in a given sphere of production. This is generally an experience of contradiction. The best example of this is a group of underprivileged laborers who share a vision of a new productive order. Giddens claims that this mindset is a step beyond the classic relative depravation model in which there is no future vision. Thus, it is a combination of conflict and contradiction which lead to revolutionary consciousness. Giddens adds two last assertions to this discussion. 1. Capitalist maturity alone is not enough for revolutionary conflict. 2. Sources of revolutionary consciousness are most likely to come from incorporated or technical advance fringe groups .
In a postscript, Giddens clarifies his theoretical positioning with respect to Marx and Weber. Giddens claims that he is not a neo-Weberian. He also is not attempting to synthesize Marx and Weber , which he sees as an undesirable proposition. He believes that Weber is important b/c he recognized a number of factors which Marx neglected. these are: 1. market as a medium of class formation. 2. the social and political significance of the new middle class in capitalism. 3. the importance of bureaucracy as a form of domination. 4. The character of the state as a force of political and military power. And while these areas are important and worth considering, Giddens himself does not adopt any of Weber's positions with regards to resolving these social issues. He feels that much of his previous work has been misread. His biggest Weberian link has been in extending the relation of production as a defining factor of class, by way of emphasizing the proximate structuration of class.
JOHN H. GOLDTHORPE
Social Mobility and Class Structure in Modern Britain
The aim of this chapter is to review the variety of interests from which the study of social mobility arised, show that there is no limited ideological range to the study, and define the author's own interest.
Goldethorpe seeks to develop Van Heek's claim that the revisionist socialist movement and the radical liberals laid the foundation for social mobility research. He starts with social Darwinist liberalism from the 19th century. At that time, social theory was blind to the problem of mobility. It was believed that ample opportunity existed for every individual to find a place in society through morals of integrity and hard work. For the most part, no attention was paid to socio-cultural influences. Mill acknowledged that hereditary inequality existed, but argued that it could be evened out by the opportunities available in capitalism.
As for Marxism, in general very little attention was paid to mobility. The only kind of mobility was collective mobility. However, Marx himself wrote a little on the subject that sparked future interest. In addition to macro phenomena such as proletarianization and the conversion of wage laborers into independent, self-supporting peasants, Marx also discussed the ''intermediate strata'' which would change with the advances stages of capitalism. This strata was neither proletariat nor bourgeoisie, but consisted of groups which would either decline (agriculturists, traders) (Verelendungstheorie) or flourish (managers, administrators) in the face of capitalism. Those who flourished would perform labor for capitalists and maintain themselves directly from capitalists' revenue. Their labor would be non-productive (service-oriented) and would replace a large part of the proletariat. This whole change would occur gradually, from generation to generation.
Edouard Bernstein, an 'evolutionary socialist' of the German Social Democrat Party in 1898, agreed with Marx that as capitalism advanced, there would be an increase in non-productive service occupations. However, this burgeoning middle class would weaken the Marxist ''catastrophe theory.'' He thought it was necessary to work for reform and not revolution.
Like Bernstein, Sombart and Michels also doubted that the proletariat could be an agent of revolution. Sombart (like Marx) claimed that the possibilities of minor entrepreneuership for proletariats inhibited their formation of a class. Yet unlike Marx, Sombart had a more voluntaristic image of social action. Proletariats didn't have to follow the Marxist trajectory toward revolution.
Although Michels agreed with Marx about people's feelings of condemnation to hired work leading to anti-capitalist movement, he was impressed by the working class' persistent aspiration toward mobility. As the social pressure for advancement increased, labor movement would be swallowed by the bourgeoisie.
Sorokin criticized Marx for his ideas on social mobility. First, the small men of the intermediate strata would not decline. The Verelendungstheorie was false. Second, both inter and INTRA - generational mobility could occur, as evidenced in people's transitions from manual to non-manual labor. The makeup of occupational groups was quite fluid; people were not stuck in one occupation because of heredity. Sorokin went on to argue that the working class was not an agency of social transformation. Mobility varied inversely with revolutionary commitment. There could be no distinct direction to social evolution.
Sorokin had a positive liberal interpretation of mobility, i.e. that mobility is a value to be preserved and maximized. Mobility was not negative; it was not an obstacle to social progress. Sorokin's view (which concerned the success of liberal democracy --i.e. go USA ) founded the framework for post WWII mobility research. It brought a lot of criticism from liberals in the 1960's. (Here, Goldethorpe interjects that a positive view of mobility can also stem from socialism (British case).
The major contributors to the study of post-war mobility were Lipset, and Blau and Duncan. They were all interested in the maintenance of a liberal democratic order (read: right-wing). Although they all believed that mobility was increasing with the advance of industry and capitalism, they did diverge. Blau and Duncan asserted that universalism, in which the concepts of rationality and efficiency reach out to all groups in society, led to a criterion for success based on individual achievement instead of ascription. By encouraging individual rather than collective attempts at advancement, class solidarity would be weakened and class status group lines would be blurred. This would stabilize the current political regime.
Although Lipset agreed with all these 'positive' aspects of mobility, he saw destabilizing aspects in the mobility of advanced societies. The ethos of individual achievement could prove to be very frustrating for those who could not succeed. This could generate resentment and alienation, spurring the recruitment of individuals into extremist social movements -- thus upsetting political stability. Hence, unremitting universalism could lead to socially disruptive rather than integrative effects.
Goldethorpe next moves to British mobility studies, which stem largely from British ''ethical socialism. (Similar to the German Revisionists). The British Ethical Socialists were not concerned about mobility opportunities like the Marxists were. They saw nothing wrong with gradual reform toward socialism and were not worried about the lack of a ''catastrophic event.'' High mobility made stratification less extreme and equalized conditions. Equality of condition had to rise with equality of opportunity (D.V. Glass , London School of Economics). With equality of condition, society could more generally reduce status and class differences. (eg: educational reform couldn't work without equalizing class and status differences).
Before moving into a criticism of the Marxists, Goldethorpe reiterates his basic point that intellectual concern with the problems of mobility stems from a variety of ideological positions and there is no simple one to one relationship between the research interest and the socio-political agenda of the researcher. OK. Back to the Marxists.
Goldethorpe claims that traditional Marxists have only charged other mobility theorists with ideological bias and not gone any further. People like Poulantzas are more concerned with the structure of positions from the relations of production than the distribution of individuals. Other Marxists believe that mobility is of little consequence in the class struggle because it is held down by capitalism. Yet, some Marxists have moved beyond these arguments.
Westergaard and Reiser assert that patterns of mobility can affect class formation and hence revolutionary goals (low class identification --]low rev. commitment). Giddens , although he rejects the Marxist concept of class and sees classes as aggregates of individuals identifiable with their degree of empirical structuration, asserts that general structuration results from the closure of mobility.
Parkin's views represent a combination of the other theorists. Like Blau and Duncan, he claims that the social order is the background of class structure in western society,. Like Westergaard and Reiser, he admits that differences among the working class exist. And like Giddens, he asserts that the closure of mobility leads to class structure, but he states it can also lead to class conflict.
Unlike orthodox Marxism these theorists accept mobility as an integral feature of capitalist society. However, like Marx, their concern with mobility comes from their interest in class formation and conflict.
Lastly, Goldethorpe explains his interest in the study of mobility. He believes that, for the most part, mobility is associated with greater social openness. He agrees with the ethical socialists, however, that the liberal ideology lacks openness in empirical stratification. Yet he wouldn't entirely blame the inequality of condition on economic reasons. Furthermore, he is interested in mobility for class formation and action and does not see it as a threat to social progress. Hence, his general interest is twofold: openness and class formation. In the rest of this book, he investigates issues such as absolute mobility of a group, relative mobility between groups, the integrative function of mobility, and individuals' social relations as a result of mobility.
The Future of Intellectuals and the Rise of the New Class
The New Class is composed of intellectuals and technical intelligentsia. It is a social object that can be defined in terms of its value or goodness, and its power. Gouldner sees the New Class (NC) as a flawed, universal class. Its power is growing. It is elitist and self-seeking, and is composed of Professors (the intellectuals), Engineers (technical intelligentsia) in general it is the Professional and Managerial Class. The NC does not yet have the power to rule, but someday it will. Cultural Capital is the basis of the NC.
The author examines the emergence of the NC through several ''episodes'' (or changes) in (Western European) history. Some of the more important episodes are:
-a process of secularization challenged church and traditional authority, made way for rationality
-breakdown of feudal systems
-growth of an autonomous market, allowing individuals (particularly those of the NC to separate ''public'' spheres from ''private'' spheres of life.
-replacement of the extended patriarchal family system with the nuclear family
-growth of public education; education was separated from religious training . The new educational system provided a break from training in the home to training with semi-autonomous teachers (state rather than parental or church influence).
-change from ''restricted'' to ''elaborated'' linguistic codes.
-spread of literacy
Gouldner if referring to class, revolution, and change in terms of Marxian class and change. He sees problems with the Marxian analysis of revolution, and the actors in the class revolution. Gouldner sees a changing form of the revolutionary organization. The Marxian revolutionary organization evolves from a ritualistic, oath-based secret society the likes of which Marx, Engels, and the Communist Manifesto were involved with, into a modern, 'vanguard' party or movement. (vanguard: n. the forefront of an action or movement). The new vanguard organization combines elements of the secret society with the public political party. It s public in the sense that there is public access to the party's doctrine. The vanguard party expresses the modernizing and elite ambitions of the NC. It was created to overcome the contradiction between the NC and the working-class, and is an instrument for the transformation of the NC from alienation to radicalization.
CCD - Culture of Critical Discourse: a special culture of speech which characterizes the NC. It is a bond between the humanistic intellectuals and the technical intelligentsia.
**To Gouldner, Marxism is the false consciousness of cultural bourgeoisie who have been radicalized. It is a false consciousness because the commitment to the self-emancipation of the proletariat is an act of theory made by a theoretical elite. In essence, Marxism is the creation of educated intellectuals, not the consciousness of the proletariat.
**The Marxist notion that the main protagonist in class struggle were capitalist ad bourgeoisie is an illusion; it is inaccurate. The two classes do struggle, but in the 20th century, this has not been the struggle that has produced or could produce revolution. For a revolution to be successful, certain qualifications have to be met. there must be a change in power (from the old state to the new state) and there must be a transfer in major property. A transfer in property amongst the bourgeoisie only is not a true revolution, but a bourgeoisie revolution because the money is only passing from those controlling the land to those investing in the land. A true ''collective revolution'' is one where power passes from the bourgeoisie to those with human capital (i.e. advanced education). Note here that the educated, not the peasants, benefit from what he calls a true revolution. The HC is generated from the old class because it begins in a class with the advantage of owning property. However, it has more knowledge, is more professional, and devalues the authority of the old class. It is not egalitarian, in that it wants special privileges (political power and income) because of its advanced human capital. Unlike the proletariat, it controls its working environment (NB: sounds a lot like Yuppies to me).
The NC has been invisible in revolutionary politics. In advanced industrial societies, the NC is not only politically revolutionary, but through the advanced technical intelligentsia, has revolutionized the mode of production. The NCs knowledge give it an advantage over the old moneyed class, who owns the means of production, but doesn't have the necessary skills to manage it effectively.
There are 5 main sources of alienation for the New Class:
1. Alienation because of blacked opportunities for mobility, due to an oversupply of educated manpower (ex. in India, there is an over-supply of doctors, making their upward mobility less rewarding). ''Blocked ascendance'' produces an increase in the political activity and open confrontation to authority by the NC.
2. Blocked communication, the central mode of influence used by the NC.
3. Disparity between their ''high culture'' and their lesser enjoyment: of incomes in power and wealth (i.e. sociology professors).
4. They may feel alienated because of their commitment to the social ''totality.'' Their education, and the social roles they play entail an obligation to the collectivity (i.e. society) as a whole. This may lead to an alienation from elites (imaging Moon as a wealthy Trustee of the University: where would her loyalties lie?).
5. Blockage of technical interests.
The NC is not the end of domination, but it is the nucleus of a new hierarchy and the elite of a new form of cultural capital. The old class is dying and is being replaced by the NC, which is reproducing itself faster than any other class in society.
The New Class and Parsons: Parsons defines modern society as characterized by professionalism rather than by its capitalistic ''character.'' He focuses on the convergence of professionals and business. By assimilating business to the professions, he provides a new legitimation for the old business class. Parsons sees the new elite in the US as bound to the old class; he sees a compromise between the interests of both groups.
But Gouldner finds that, with the growth of public education, the distribution of cultural capital is no longer so tightly correlated with the old class of the moneyed rich. The old class decreasingly controls the resources for the reproduction of cultural capital. (NB: I think we can think of some theorists that would disagree: how about Bowles and Ginits?)