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Social Classes Essay

1103 words - 5 pages

Atonement is set in England during the 1930’s in which during that time society was highly influenced by very segregated social class, in the novel both characters Cecilia and Robbie are the most affected characters by this segregated social class. Social class is one of the big themes in the novel “Atonement” it helps establish the background and foundation of the whole plot. It adds to the conflict the characters deal with throughout the novel. Social class is an example of social structure; class deals with the shaping of a cultural group who share many similar qualities as in race or economic standing. Social class also shapes the way people interact with each other, in other words how ...view middle of the document...

He said the basic structure of society is economic, which then influences the rest of society in a nonmaterial way.

On the other hand, a social class is defined as “a group of people within a society who possess the same socioeconomic status,”(Britannica School, “social class.”) The way class distinctions started being established when a person’s social standing started being noticed by other people and this social standing was mostly based on a person’s wealth, race, family relationships, and level of education. People started to separate into the higher class, which was obviously those who had a higher education level, part of a dominant race, and were making a lot of money. Those people separated from those who were less fortunate which formed separation and the title given to that is social class. These class distinctions became more known as few people grew power and accumulated wealth. During the 1930’s was when there was a lot of segregation in the social classes. This was because the whole social class was fairly new and the higher class started to think they were better than the lower class therefor segregating themselves from those of a lower class and only having interaction with those of the same class. The classification of classes is mostly based on wealth, as that is what determines everything. For example, in modern day someone from the higher class is distinguished by “mainly by its possession of great wealth—either inherited or earned,”(Britannica School, “social class.”)

Europe was affected with the segregation in classes during the 1930’s part due to their involvement in WW2. Sociologist took advantage of the recent changes, so many of them created or were part of social surveys that studied the social classes in England. Even though England was known to have long history of social surveys they started to focus more on the condition of the working class. The initial work of John Hall was he made a study on social standing so that he would be able to study the changes in social class through the terms of changes in occupation. This was stated in the “American Sociological Review” published by Joel B. Montague, Jr. These social changes referred to the fact on a person’s change in occupation,...

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