Contemporary American Class Structure

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Contemporary American Class Structure Social class is defined as 'people having the same social or economic status' (Wordnet). In contemporary American society, social class is based on the amount of money and property you have and also prestige. Prestige is given to a person through the line of work or the family that they come from. For example, upper-upper class member Jennifer Lopez reeks of prestige not only because she has millions of dollars in her bank account, but she has very expensive luxuries, cars, and houses. There are four categories of class in contemporary American society: upper, middle, working and lower. Of these four categories of classes, two are subdivide. These two are: upper class and the middle class. These are then divided into: upper-upper class, lower-upper class, upper-middle class and lower-middle class (W.W. Norton, Co.). There are different criterions to be categorized in each class. To be considered high-class, the person must have an annual income of at least $100,000, and have power and authority in their line of work (Norton). For example, the CEO of a major brokerage firm would be in the high-class. With these criteria, today's celebrities and athletes would be categorized in the upper-upper class. They have an insane amount of money, prestige, and have to ability and flexibility in their jobs to have what they want when they want it. They are in control of their own destinies. Lower-upper class believes that money and power are very important in life. The lower-upper class members, also called 'new money,' work harder for what they have as compared to the upper-upper class because most have earned their position in the class, as opposed to being 'old money' (Norton... ... middle of paper ... ...heir own; I wish we all could be as financially secure as the upper class, but I also wish that everyone was as modest and grateful when receiving as the lower class. Possibly in the future, but I do not think this will happen anytime soon. Works Cited Norton, G. ?Social Classes in America.? Introduction to Sociology. 5 December 2003. ?Rich Girls.? MTV. 7 December 2003. ?Theory Greats.? Villanova Webpage. 5 December 2003. Wordnet. 2003. ?Dictionary.Com.? 5 December 2003. W.W. Norton and Co., Com. ?Introduction to Sociology.? 5 December 2003.

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