StudentShare solutions
Triangle menu

Is social inequality meritocratic - Essay Example

Nobody downloaded yet
One motive for the incredible persistence of social hierarchies is that they are reinforced by ideology, cultural viewpoints that cause and maintain the interest of definite categories of people and justify stratification. Naturally, ideology takes the structure of developing cultural patterns that are confirmed directly and indirectly in accordance with a disproportionate distribution of resources and rights to definite categories of people. Melvin M. Tumin studied social stratification and inequality and summarized: functional justification is similar to class system; we act according to certain patterns or sets of ideas. Social stratification can in fact cause demotivation of people, those who are deprived of their rights might also be demotivated. Also Tumin states that social stratification depends on relations of power and distribution of power in society. "The main functional necessity explaining the universal presence of stratification is precisely the requirement faced by any society of placing and motivating individuals in the social structure. As a functioning mechanism a society must somehow distribute its members in social positions and induce them to perform the duties of these positions. It must thus concern itself with motivation at two different levels: to instill in the proper individuals the desire to fill certain positions, and, once in these positions, the desire to perform the duties attached to them" (Tumin, 1953,, par. 5). Social inequality systems' purpose is to provide the privileged classes with the political power needed to obtain recognition and supremacy of an ideology which rationalizes the status quo, whatever it may be, as "logical," "natural" and "morally right. This way, social inequality systems are those of fundamentally conservative influences in the societies in which they are established. So Tumin states that meritocracy is based on the importance of one's status and occupation.
Social-conflict perspective shows that, rather than benefiting society as a whole, social stratification guarantees that some people get advantage at the expense of others. Karl Marx states that the two main social classes match to the two basic relationships people have to the resources of production. People can own property or they can work for others. In industrialized class models, the capitalists (or the) manage plants, which use the manual labor of workers (the proletariat). Work that consists mostly of manual labor is known as "blue-collar" work whereas work that contains middle-management office jobs is known as "white-collar" jobs. Marx believed that social disparity was dangerous for society. Marx gives a vivid contraposition of those two classes and suggests that social inequality is exactly meritocratic, since 'white-collar' class is more privileged and comprises elite, which exploits proletarians, or people who have no own property. The inner merit of person from higher class is that he or she was born in such family and belongs to bourgeoisie.
Marx's and Weber's concepts are similar in many aspects, so the author decided to compare them. The idea of class and class struggle does not occupy as significant a role in Weber as in Marx. In Weber's opinion, the rising speed of bureaucracy in all organizations is an unavoidable of the ...Show more
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Is social inequality meritocratic Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 words”, n.d.)
Retrieved from
(Is Social Inequality Meritocratic Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 Words)
“Is Social Inequality Meritocratic Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 750 Words”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times


It is difficult to say whether social inequality is meritocratic or not without any base of knowledge, i.e. without any information about the issue. In this work I'm going to present points of view of three outstanding scholars: Melvin Tumin, Karl Marx and Max Weber and produce my own vision of the subject.
Is social inequality meritocratic
Read Text Preview
Save Your Time for More Important Things
Let us write or edit the essay on your topic
"Is social inequality meritocratic"
with a personal 20% discount.
Grab the best paper

Check these samples - they also fit your topic

Social inequality in Australia
The Immigration Restriction Act of 1901 though resulted in social inequality in Australia for about 50 years after its implementation, it has also transformed the thinking of policy makers by realizing the necessity of incorporating the principle of social equality in public policy.
9 pages (2250 words) Essay
As a beginning teacher, discuss the challenges that issues of inequality may pose to the implementation of Singapore National Ed
However, the implementation of these National Education policies have to contend with the inequality issues prevalent within the social context of teaching and learning some of which are associated with an individual’s race/ethnic, social status and gender.
5 pages (1250 words) Essay
Social Inequality in Australia
Social inequality in Australia Discussion on the ways in which the Immigration Restriction act of 1901 impacted on some aspect of inequality historically, and the ways in which its legacy continues to be felt today in public policy and perception Introduction The Immigration Act of 1901 is an important act in the history of Australia as it provided major guidelines and procedure for any person who wants to enter the soil of Australia (Jupp, 2007).
9 pages (2250 words) Essay
Poverty and Social Inequality
Most people in the society aim at being successful individuals. Success is measured in terms of material wealth, power, and social connections. Poverty and social inequality have a huge impact on individuals’ road to success. While poverty and class differences may not hold an individual back from achieving success, belonging to a higher class may help boost one’s chances of achieving or failing (Locke, 2012).
4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Social Inequality Essay
Once the Americans were too specific about class distinction and the upper crust always vacationed in Europe and worshiped an Episcopal God; the middle class drove Ford Fairlanes, settled the San Fernando Valley and enlisted as company men; and the working class belonged to the A.F.L.-C.I.O., voted Democratic and did not take cruises to the Caribbean.
4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Social Inequality
The three main classical sociologists Weber, Marx and Durkheim had made predictions on how social inequality would affect the modern society. These predictions though distinct in nature had couple of similarities as well. Today the inequality has acquired several more dimensions.
4 pages (1000 words) Essay
Globalization and Social inequality
One of the driving forces of the struggle is globalization. We will discuss this term along with social inequality in the first part of our essay. As we shall se both of these definitions require a point of view, as a base for the debate. Joseph E. Stiglitz in "Globalization and its discontents"1 explains that when we talk about globalization some critics may emerge regarding the fact that people, in developing countries, are working for international companies for a miserable salary and that this should not be the effects of globalization.
10 pages (2500 words) Essay
Social Inequality College Essay
All societies are characterized by some degree of social inequality. When a system of social inequality is based on hierarchy of groups, sociologists refer to it as stratification: a structured ranking of entire groups of people that perpetuates unequal economic rewards and power in a society.
8 pages (2000 words) Essay
Methods ProjectUsing data from the National Child Development Survey (NCDS) explore the extent to which the British education system has a meritocratic outcome
In the UK, meritocracy has been practiced at different levels, however, rules and regulations which have been enacted make it easy for all to be included in the education system as well as the equal opportunities for education making it
12 pages (3000 words) Essay
Social Inequality
But deliberate attempts from both the parties can convert such relationships into successful ones. The New York Times, dated May 19, 2005, has published the story of a male and a female who lead a successful married life even though
3 pages (750 words) Essay
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment
Let us find you another Essay on topic Is social inequality meritocratic for FREE!
Contact us:
Contact Us Now
FREE Mobile Apps:
  • About StudentShare
  • Testimonials
  • FAQ
  • Blog
  • Free Essays
  • New Essays
  • Essays
  • The Newest Essay Topics
  • Index samples by all dates
Join us:
Contact Us