Sociology factors Essay

This essay has a total of 1164 words and 5 pages.

sociology factors


1. (a) Privilege is defined as a favor or right granted to some people, but not to everyone.
(b) Power is defined as strength, ability, or a driving force. (c) Difference is defined
as the way in which two things are not the same. (d) According to MacIntosh there are two
types of privileges. The first is based on what she calls "unearned entitlements," which
are things that all people should have. Some examples are feeling safe in a public place
or working in a place where they feel that they belong and are valued for what they can
contribute. The other type of privilege is what MacIntosh calls "unearned advantage," and
occurs when "unearned entitlements" are restricted to certain groups. An example would be
a white person feeling out of place at a downtown nightclub. (e) The paradox in privilege
is that individuals are the one's who experience privilege or the lack of it, but
individuals are not what are actually privileged. Instead, privilege is defined in
relation to a group or a social category. For example, race privilege is more about white
people than it is about white people. Privileges are only granted in society when people
identify the individual as belonging to a specific category, race, gender, or cultural
background. By saying that oppression is the flip side of privilege the author means that
for every social category that is privileged, one or more other categories are oppressed
in relation to it. Oppression points toward the social forces that "press" upon people and
hold them back, thus blocking their pursuit of a good life.

2. (a) Capitalism is defined as an economic system based on ownership of resources by
individuals or companies and not by the state. Capitalism as it relates to sociology has
to do with the fact that it not only produces enormous amounts of wealth, but that it
creates extreme levels of inequality among social classes and societies. Capitalism also
has made the rich richer and the poor poorer and has opened the gap in the U.S. class
system. The matrix of domination says that each particular form of privilege, whether
based on race, gender, sexual orientation, class, religion, or ethnicity, exists only as a
much larger system of privilege. It works by simplifying and clarifying the gray areas
that we encounter in privilege. It allows us to see that each form of privilege exists
only in relation to all the rest and keeps us from trying to figure out which is the worst
or most oppressive. It states that usually we are both oppressed and not oppressed,
privileged and not privileged.

3. (a) Privilege works and exists through social systems and individuals that participate
in them. They are dominated by privileged groups, identified with privilege groups, and
centered on privileged groups. For example, race privilege happens through systems that
are white-dominated, white-identified, and white-centered. (b) Rejection is used in the
system of privilege by social groups shunning other social groups. For example, realtors
steering blacks away from white neighborhoods and by bankers refusing loans to potential
black homebuyers. (c) Exclusion is used in the system of privilege by leaving particular
social groups out of events, conversations, and the like. For example, always picking the
fat kid last in a game of kickball. (d) Avoidance is used in the system of privilege when
people do not acknowledge the presence of another person because of his or her race,
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