What Social Scientists Mean When They Talk About Social Class Essay

What Social Scientists Mean When They Talk About Social Class Essay

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In this essay I will first look at what social scientists mean when they talk about social class. I will then look at three different kinds of evidence that can be used and how they can support the argument that social class is linked to where people live. The first type of evidence I will look at is quantitative evidence and show how it can be used to support this claim. The second type kind of evidence I will look at is qualitative evidence and use examples to show how this type of evidence can also support the claim. Finally I will look at how information from case studies can be used. At the end of the essay I come to the conclusion that the evidence supports the claim that social class is linked to where people live.

First of all, it is necessary to look at what social scientists mean when they talk about social class. Social classes are a way to ‘classify’ members of society into large groups with perceived collective identities. Traditionally there have been three classes of people identified when referring to class in the United Kingdom. These classes are referred to as the working class, the middle class and the upper class. One of the ways the working class can be defined as is those who sell their labour in order to survive (Marx, cited in Taylor, 2014, p. 13). The middle classes are seen as more affluent people who typically hold jobs providing services such as teacher, doctor, and solicitor. Finally, the upper classes are viewed as the wealthiest and most well connected members of society. Viewed in this way class would seem to be intrinsically linked to wealth, with the poorest members at the bottom of society and wealthiest at the top. This would mean that financial inequalities are an issue when talking about diff...

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...king class area shows that the middle classes were, quite literally, not connected to the working classes. The middle classes, intentionally or not, avoided where the working classes lived, showing that class was connected to where people lived in 18th century Manchester.

In conclusion the evidence presented supports the claim that social class is connected to where people live. The qualitative evidence shows this by identifying that success in sport has a link between peoples class and where people live. When we look at the quantitative evidence, it too supports the claim by showing that within the same street people can be segregated by class. Finally by looking at the case study of Manchester we can see that different classes can avoid interacting with where the other classes live. All of this evidence points to social class being connected to where people live.

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