The Impact Of Social Inequality On Education

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Social inequality is one of the main issues in social science. One of the main purposes of sociology is to criticise social issues. As Zygmunt Bauman is stating, “Sociology is a critical activity” (2014, 26), that aims to criticise economic and social improvement within the society. Society´s hunger of ceaseless improvement is often resulting in a paradox: the higher classes are taking advantage of capitalistic development, the more lower classes are suffering from this constant growth, due to an uneven distribution of power. This essay aims to analyse how capital and class division can affect education in our contemporary society, particularly focusing on non-traditional students and their experience at university, by presenting two approaches…show more content…
Although it is still crucial to point out, that markets are still developing, and as the product demand keeps rising, the production has been moved to developing countries, where exploitation is the main reason behind terrible living and working conditions, and often child labour. Furthermore, even if living conditions have improved in developed countries, this uneven distribution of power is still present and resulting in social inequality, as for example regarding education, even though more students from lower and middle classes are more likely to get a higher education today than just half a century ago. By looking at the subdivision of students in universities in the U.S., for example economic resources are often the reason behind why students from working-class families are lesser than students from higher-class families. Financial resources play a crucial role: in the U.S. students will usually have to take big loans in order to attend their studies, but these loans are usually difficult to pay back, once that students are done with their education. It often takes several years to pay them back. While, on the other hand, students from higher classes, would typically be able to avoid taking loans, due to their families wealthy…show more content…
It is crucial to analyse all these types of social capital, in order to explain which factors are determining such differences within an educational context. As Meuleman et al are arguing (2014, 503), utilising Bourdieu’s and Marx’s concept of capital, non-traditional students’ experience might not always be positive. It often implies serious difficulties to integrate within the social and academic field of university, sometimes resulting in isolation and even depression, having difficulties to feel part of a community (ibid,509). Cultural capital is also playing a crucial role, as some students, with a different, even international background have difficulties achieving high results, due to a lack of a required cultural and language skills

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