Between 1984 and 2011, high-wealth families’ average wealth increased by almost 125%, while middle-wealth families’ wealth increased by hardly 12%. On the other hand, the lowest-wealth families’ average wealth dropped well below zero, signifying their exceeded debt than their average wealth (McKernan et al. 1-2). Today, the richest 1% of population owns almost 38% of overall wealth in the US (Shapiro et al. 1).
The growing wealth inequality in the US is influenced by many factors, such as the extraordinary growth of the housing bubble, following its sudden burst, and the Great Recession of 2007-09, devastating the wealth of majority of middle-and low-wealth families while allowing the further accumulation of wealth in the hands of the country’s richest (Eilers 6-9). Besides political and economic factors, the ethnic or racial factor has been widely linked with growing wealth inequality in the US. Many researchers and experts have supported the correlation between wealth inequality and racial discrimination by means of major sociological theories and concepts, like racial domination, white privilege, systemic racism, institutionalized racism, and symbolic violence. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the concept of inequality in wealth on the basis of major sociological concepts and theories of racial discrimination.
Race is one of the major attributes of inequality in wealth in the US. Various researches and official reports have regularly highlighted the tremendous inequality in wealth between the races. According to the research of Federal Reserve, the wealth gap between whites and blacks increased from 8 times in 2010 to massive 13 times in 2013. Similarly, the wealth of whites was over 10 times the wealth of Hispanics in 2013, compared with 9 times the wealth in 2010 (Kochhar and Fry). According to the Census report, during the late 1960s, when the Civil Rights movement was at its peak and Jim Crow laws of racial segregation were