D1 - Evaluate different sociological explanations for patterns and trends of health and illness in two different social groups In this assignment I hope to effectively discuss and evaluate the patterns and trends associated with health and illness within the higher and lower social classes. I am going to do this by discussing and evaluating the following explanations and perspectives within sociology; Artefact explanation, Natural or Social Selection explanation, Cultural or Behavioural explanation and Materialist or Structuralist explanation.
This explanation suggests that statistics show an unfair prejudice towards lower class people. Because of the high numbers of older and middle aged people working in dangerous jobs it was assumed that they would have higher levels of illness and mortality. This suggests that employment and age are also important contributing factors when explaining the differences, not just social class.
Reporting of ill health must also be considered within these statistics as it is known that within our culture; men are less likely to seek help or report illness unlike women.
This explanation has some weakness although as it doesn’t clearly explain the inequalities in health within both social classes even though evidence shows that people from a higher social class live longer.
But despite this weakness, the fact that this explanation uses quantitative methods for collecting data shows that it is more reliable. This explanation is strengthened further because the evidence collected can be used to talk about a vast amount of people in general.
Natural or Social selection explanation
This explanation has a completely opposing view on ill health and social class than that of the artefact explanation. This explanation believes that people are in a low class because they have poor