Sociology in Australia

Essay by Osman242University, Bachelor'sB+, November 2011

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Osman Tlais (180534) S2643779 CCJ18 CRIME & SOCIETY Assessment 1 DUE DATE: 3/10/2011

Is there an "underclass in Australia, or is this term an example of middle-class prejudice about the poor?

Some writers suggest that the repetition of daily routines, rituals and the fact that we deal with the same people, live within the same community and work in the same place every day, we are blinded by inequalities and class division that exists around us today (Bessant, J and Watts, R 2007). Social class and stratification is a phenomenon that theorists have been trying to pin for centuries. Among these theorists two ideologies prevail and those are the Marxist and Weberian views on this topic.

The admittance that a middle-class is eminent in Australia, suggests that a class based society which includes an upper, middle and lower class referred to in this paper as an "underclass" also exists in Australia.

This paper will try to deduce whether the so called "underclass" recognizes itself as such, or is this merely a prejudice term used by the middle-class.

Carl Marx and Max Weber differ in their analysis of class. A contrast can be made through analytical hypothesis of social class, such as the Marxian and Weberian traditions, and the more empirical traditions such as the socio-economic status approach, which points out the interrelationship of income, education and wealth with social outcomes without directly enticing a specific theory of social structure. Needless to say, both Marx and Weber's theories of social class are applicable to the understanding of Australian society. They entail methods of determining an individuals class either by economics or their ability to generate profit/revenue. The contrast between there conceptualization of class may at times have been overdrawn, but it cannot be denied that there outlooks are relevant. Despite this...