Social Status

Social status   ,

Status can be determined in two ways. One can earn their social status by their own achievements, which is known as achieved status. Alternatively, one can be placed in the stratification system by their inherited position, which is called ascribed status. An embodied status is one that is generated by physical characteristics located within our physical selves (such as beauty, physical disability, stature, build). The status that is the most important for an individual at a given time is called master status.

Ascribed statuses can also be defined as those that are fixed for an individual at birth. Ascribed statuses that exist in all societies include those based upon sex, race ethnic group and family background. For example, a person born into a wealthy family characterized by traits such as popularity, talents and high values will have many expectations growing up. Therefore, they are given and taught many social roles as they are socially positioned into a family becoming equipped with all these traits and characteristics. Achieved status means also what the individual acquires during his or her lifetime as a result of the exercise of knowledge, ability, skill and/or perseverance. Occupation provides an example of status that may be either ascribed or achieved; it can be achieved by one gaining the right knowledge and skill to become socially positioned into a higher position of that job, building a persons social identity within the occupation. Social status is used in many parts of the world.

Hierarchy can be conveyed and detected through voice.
Status refers to the relative rank that an individual holds; this includes attendant rights, duties, and lifestyle, in a social hierarchy based upon honor or prestige. Status has two different types that come along with it: achieved, and ascribed. The word status refers to social stratification on a vertical scale.

In society, pariah status groups are regarded with disdain or treated as outcasts by the majority of the population. The term derives from the Paraiyar (Pariah caste), members of which are treated as outcasts in Hindu society.

In modern societies, occupation is usually thought of as the main determinant of status, but other memberships or affiliations (such as ethnic group, religion, gender, voluntary associations, fandom, hobby) can have an influence.[4][5] Achieved status is when people are placed in the stratification structure based on their individual merits or achievements. This status can be achieved through education, occupation, and marital status. Their place within the stratification structure is determined by societys bar, which often judges them on success, success being financial, academic, political and so on. America most commonly uses this form of status with jobs. The higher you are in rank the better off you are and the more control you have over your co-workers.

In pre-modern societies, status differentiation is widely varied. In some cases it can be quite rigid and class based, such as with the Indian caste system. In other cases, status exists without class and/or informally, as is true with some Hunter-Gatherer societies such as the Khoisan, and some Indigenous Australian societies. In these cases, status is limited to specific personal relationships. For example, a Khoisan man is expected to take his wifes mother quite seriously (a non-joking relationship), although the mother-in-law has no special “status” over anyone except her son-in-law”and only then in specific contexts. All societies have a form of social status.

Status is an important idea in social stratification. Max Weber distinguishes status from social class,[6] though some contemporary empirical sociologists add the two ideas to create socioeconomic status or SES, usually operationalised as a simple index of income, education and occupational prestige.
Status can be changed through a process of social mobility. Social mobility is change of position within the stratification system. A move in status can be upward (upward mobility), or downward (downward mobility). Social mobility allows a person to move to another social status other than the one he or she was born in. Social mobility is more frequent in societies where achievement rather than ascription is the primary basis for social status.

Social mobility is especially prominent in the United States in recent years with an ever-increasing number of women entering into the workplace as well as a steady increase in the number of full-time college students.[18][19] This increased education as well as the massive increase in multiple household incomes has greatly contributed to the rise in social mobility obtained by so many today. With this upward mobility; however, comes the philosophy of “Keeping up with the Joneses” that so many Americans obtain. Although this sounds good on the surface, it actually poses a problem because millions of Americans are in credit card debt due to conspicuous consumption and purchasing goods that they do not have the money to pay for.