Social Stratification In The Caribbean Essay

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Which of the sociological perspectives of social stratification is most relevant to the experience of societies in the English speaking Caribbean? Use the findings of empirical studies conducted in the region to illustrate your answer.

Haralambos, Holborn and Heald (2004) defines social stratification as a particular form of Social inequality, It refers to the presence of a distinct social groups which are ranked one above the other in terms of factors such as prestige and wealth. The most common Sociological perspective of Social Stratification most relevant in the English speaking Caribbean was the class system/class distinction. Therefore, the stratification systems in the Caribbean were found to be influenced by slavery, indentureship, and education and settlement patterns of the Europeans during slavery and after emancipation of the slaves (Course Material). The social structure of the Caribbean has been greatly influenced by the impact of colonialism and its attendant factors. However, the decade of the1960s marked the end of the colonial era for the English-speaking islands and coastlands of the Caribbean region. The two most populous territories were Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago they became independent in 1962.
    Additionally, before emancipation, Caribbean society featured three main strata; the white upper stratum of plantation owners and managers; a brown middle stratum of skilled and semi skilled workers, traders and small groups of persons who owned and operated businesses (Course Material). Lastly, there was a lower stratum of mostly black, manual, unskilled workers in both the rural and urban areas (Course Material). However, even though the Caribbean society featured these three main strata, studies conducted in the English speaking Caribbean suggested that stratification patterns was largely determined by a changing class structure that was shifting and expanding mostly in the middle stratum.
C.L.R.James (1962), in his writing cited...

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