Social Stratification

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Q1A. The question of the inevitability of social stratification is one of the fundamental bases of the theories of Kingsley Davis and Wilbert Moore. Davis and Moore (1945) argue that as long as there is division of labor in the society, and that there are variability in the roles with varying degrees of importance, stratification will occur.

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There is a significant difference in the wages of CEO’s and a minimum wage earner because according to the theory, there is a functional necessity of providing different rewards for different positions in the society in accordance to an individual’s abilities.

Because not everyone is qualified for specific positions or roles set by the society, there is a need to fill them by making sure that the right people are motivated enough to find ways by which they can fill these certain positions. The theory established by Davis and Moore shows that social stratification, aside from being inevitable, is highly functional in nature. Stratification is an instrument that the society utilizes to attract the right people for the right roles set by the society.

The situation regarding the increasing wage gap between the CEO and the minimum wage earners can be explained by the functional needs to get the right people motivated to do to right job through stratification. Q1B. There is empirical evidence showing that women earn significantly less than men. Davis and Moore would probably look at this situation emphasizing that gender is a central aspect in the social stratification.

It is functional in a sense that men are physically more competent than women, and therefore giving them more incentives to perform these positions would result to the improvement of productivity. Society has set different roles for different genders and usually, the roles that are assigned to women are those that would allow them in work inside the house taking care of children for instance. Though this may also be considered as a full time job, there is no monetary equivalence to this kind of occupation.

In contrast to this, men are expected to earn the income for their family to continue subsistence. The main function of inequality is due to the very fact that not all roles in the society have the same extent of difficulty. Because there is a societal notion that the responsibility assigned to men and women are not the same, social stratification according to gender exists, hence the difference in wage rates. Q2A Melvin Tulmin made a response to the theory created by Davis and Moore.

He claims that there are several loopholes that the functional theories of Davis and Moore were not able to address,

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