Reading Summary Sociology Class

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SOCI 101 Summary Exercise: R. Field (ID #8892153)
Higley, S. R. 1995. “Privilege, Power and Place: The Geography of the American Upper Class.” In L. Procter (comp.), Class, Ethnicity and Gender: A Sociological Primer For the Beginning Student, pp. 184-196. Auckland: Pearson Education.

Thesis Statement:
In his article “Privilege, Power and Place: The Geography of the American Upper Class,” Stephen Higley argues that the composition of the upper class is made up of many characteristics by examining the American culture, institutions and lifestyle that make it easier to distinguish it from other social classes. By comparing the concepts of theorists Karl Marx and Max Weber, Higley suggests that the modern day American Upper Class society is determined through Weber’s definition of class and status. Through doing so, he shows us the idea of how life chances and lifestyles of person’s are affected by class.

Main Points:
* Marx and Weber’s conceptions of social class and status are compared:

* Marx: “Social class is fundamentally determined by one’s relationship to the means of production.” * Weber: “Social class is determined by an individual’s relation to the production and acquisition of goods.”

* Ethnicities and skin colour of the upper class are predominantly white. * Socializing institutions (Private Prep Schools, Fraternities, Private Clubs, Debutante Balls) are established so from Birth to Death the upper class is separated from other classes. * The upper class creates, funds and supports the institutions and other arrangements that make it possible for a member to live with very little or no contact with other social classes. * Private boarding schools are the preferred method of educating young upper class male and females as they are considered to have the greatest role and influence of their lives as their social and educational environment were completely controlled. The teachers were specifically...
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