Social Inequality

Social Inequality Introduction

Social divisions, and the inequalities that these inevitably bring, continue to be the most central and defining area and debate within contemporary Sociology.

Gender, Age, Ethnicity, and Class  

Here students study the ways in which social divisions, such as those defined by gender, age, ethnicity, and class, have an impact on our lives. This impact can include the life chances we have, the income we receive and the services we can access. Making links to social policy (or applied Sociology) in this area includes the ways in which third sector organisations have proposed to overcome such inequalities in opportunities and the policies that successive governments have adopted in this regard.

First we provide an introduction to social inequality, before turning to the subject of social class. Here we look at Karl Marx and key concepts, the Great British Class Survey, we then ask ‘who are the working class?’ and then consider the demonisation of the working class. Next we tackle gender, and look at women in politics, feminist art, we consider the example of The Fawcett Society, and then cross-cultural examples of gender inequality. Recourse are then presented on ethnicity and poverty in the UK, ethnicity and inequalities in health and ethnicity and long-term unemployment. We then turn to age and look at the young and the old, the ageing workforce and stereotypes of youth. We then turn our attention to sexuality and equality in marriage, and then disability and accessing services. Finally we look at areas of social policy relating to pupil premium funding, positive discrimination and access to work fund. We offer material covering the selection and presentation of the content of the news. Here we consider how the news distorts our worldview, followed the case of the Chinese media and Hong Kong protests, and then we tackle the issue of setting the agenda.Then we look at media representations of ethnicity and Islamophobia, followed by gender representations, and then in more detail gender representations and the 2015 General Election and the media and older women. Finally we look at the relationship between the media and its audiences by considering media violence, children and advertising, models of media influence, and finally, the media, folk devils and moral panics.

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