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Highlights interdependence between groups
Gives and explanation for inequality
Shows evidence of mobility
Emphasises importance of hard work, education and qualifications
Accepts the capitalist state
Accepts tradition and status quo
Accepts inequality as necessary
How decides what jobs are functionally important
Conflict is the force of history
Theory and political movement brings about change
Highlights exploitation of the proletariat - polarisation
Emphasises the importance of economic ownership
Explains the rise of capital and the rise of political movements
'Privileges' the proletariat
There has been no revolution yet
Theories and ResearchFunctionalism - is there evidence of social mobility?
Marxism - has society become polarised?
Weberianism - Is there evidence of social closure?
Blanden J, Gregg P and Machin SIntergenerational Mobility
Population divided into quartiles (lowest 25% of earners to the top 25%)
Data was collected on 7 countries - USA, Canada, West Germany, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland.
Blanden, Gregg and MachinLess upward mobility for those born in 1970 than born in 1958
Sons born in 1958 - 31% born into the bottom quartile were still in it when they were 33 - 17% had reached the top quartile
Some born in 1970 - 11% had reached the top quartile - 38% were still in the bottom quartile
Intergenerational Mobility had fallen in Britain - it had one of the lowest mobility rates across the 8 countries.
Education - sons of affluent families were taking advantage of increasing education opportunities compared to sons of poorer families.
Gives indepth responses
Gives the chance for follow-up questions
Allows for indepth responses
Data gathered is difficult to put into a general theory
Relies on the researcher's ability to interprete the data - could be biased
Allows for general theories to be constructed
Allows for large samples to be used
Method is objective in gathering information
No follow-up questions
Relies on the participants being honest and open in their responses
Ethical ConernsBritish Sociological Association (BSA):
Methods must be appropriate
Social and cultural diversity must be respected