Are Social Classes Dying Analysis

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The article “Are social classes dying?” by Terry Nichols Clark and Seymour Martin Lipset, and the article “The persistence of class in post-industrial societies” by Mike Hout, Clem Brooks and Jeff Manza debate the current state of social classes, and the way in which they are stratified. The first article “Are social classes dying” argues that the way social classes are stratified is evolving, thus arguing that social classes are diminishing and social stratification is crumbling. The second article “The persistence of social classes in post-industrial societies” directly challenges the first article. This article argues that social classes are not dying and that they remain relevant. The first article concludes that social classes…show more content…
The authors challenge that Clark and Lipset hand picked their data which was supportive to their argument and ignored other data which argued against their point. Essentially, Hout, Brooks, and Manza argue that social classes are not dying. They gather empirical data of their own to support their theory. First, they argue that distribution of wealth is a prime example of why classes are still relevant. They argue that those at the top continue to earn money, while those at the bottom remain poor, and if Clark and Lipset’s interpretations were correct, this would not be the case. They continue by challenging the three areas that Clark and Lipset claim are changing social stratification: Politics, post-industrial economic trends and families. The authors challenge Lipset and Clark’s use of the Alford index as it only uses two classes to summarize class voting, thus making it illegitimate. Hout, Brooks and Manza argue that as long as political parties base their campaigns around class desires, then classes remain relevant. The authors challenge the economic arguments made by Clark and Lipset, claiming they ignore the growth of the state in all industrial societies (Hout,Brooks&Manza:268). They also note that their arguments of the “slimmed family” ignore that the slimmed family has also been a source of poverty. In addition, they note that class-based selection in education has only decreased in 3 countries, thus challenging Clark and Lipset’s claims that class based selection is diminishing. Essentially, they challenge every dimension of the previous articles findings, thus proving them non
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