Venezuela: United States and Social Stratification Theories Essay

Submitted By joseparra
Words: 864
Pages: 4

Social Inequality
4/27/12
Project Part 3 After reviewing the statistics and interviewing several citizens of the town, we can get a clear picture of where it stands relative the rest of the nation. The population is well educated with one-third of residents over 25 having a Bachelor's degree, almost twice the national percentage (United States Census Bureau). In addition, 80 percent of the households are family households, which is 14 percent more than the national percent (United States Census Bureau). These statistics support the fact that East Brunswick is commonly viewed as a town where many families flock too in order to get a good education so they can follow in their parents footsteps. In the rest of this paper we will explore social stratification theories that explain how East Brunswick became the suburb it is today. Max Weber's theory of "Class, Status, Party" can help explain much of how East Brunswick is social constructed (Manza & Sauder, 81). While on the outside East Brunswick looks like a healthy and wealthy community, there are people that are still struggling to make a living in these hard times. Weber stresses that there are much more class divisions than simply the underclass and upper class (Manza & Sauder, 84). Several other factors go into the stratification of the classes with one of the big ones being level of education. Especially in these current economic times, just because one has a degree does not mean they have a white-collar job. In fact, Richard's father, who runs a landscaping business, does have a college degree but most of the work he does is considered hard labor. His father is commonly defined as lower status due to his career in landscaping even though he is economically healthy and is by no means in the underclass. In addition to an educational disparity between citizens of East Brunswick, there is also a sizable difference between Asian Americans and whites. Asian Americans make up 22% of the population making it the largest minority in East Brunswick. Because of this East Brunswick, have several business, churches, and programs geared towards the Asian American population. Unlike, cities like New Brunswick where neighborhoods appear segregated, Asians and whites are integrated into the communities. This integration helps show how social class is a more determining factor than race. Race is no longer a determining factor over educational attainment and job status. Asian American's and whites came to East Brunswick with similar goals the main one of which is providing the best for their children. Adam Smith is another philosopher whose work, "The Division of Labor", can be applied to East Brunswick (Manza & Saunder, 43). Smith emphasizes the need of public education in order to give people, including the underclass, the ability to read, write, and communicate. The American public school system now does much more than just teaching kids how to read and write, it has evolved into a competition between towns to have the more successful public schooling. This could help explain why there are so many family households in East Brunswick as the town has a good public education system. This could also be the reason why many citizens have at least a bachelor's degree. Only parents with good paying jobs can afford to move to East Brunswick meaning that many of them bring a degree…