• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Most developed countries have an unequal distribution of material, economic, and social resources across their population. Social class refers to the way individuals in a society are divided into categories or stratifications dependent on their access to these resources. These social classes are relational and form a socioeconomic hierarchal ordering. Those at the lower levels, such as the poor or working-class people, generally have less access to the wealth and opportunities within a country. Those at the top of the hierarchy, the elite and upper-middle-class people, have more resources and opportunities and do better in society in terms of education, occupation, income, and health. An individual’s position in this socioeconomic hierarchy can influence a wide range of factors. For example, people born into working-class and ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles