Income Inequality From Different Perspectives Essay

1533 Words7 Pages
Income inequality is always a main topic in Sociology, and it has generated many perspectives which can be used to look at this issue. Karl Marx and Aage B. Sorensen are the two theorists that will be discussed throughout this paper. Marx and Sorensen both researched and theorized extensively on the topic of inequality. They both knew it was apparent in society, but they looked at this issue in different ways and used different language to communicate their theories. Both were aware that exploitation was the main problem causing income inequality, but they had different views on what was being exploited. Marx argued that the control over the modes of production, or lack there of, was the distinguishing factor of inequality. Sorensen believed that it was the control over one’s assets and property rights which caused exploitation because some had control over these things, while others did not. These forms of ownership and non-ownership create conflict among the people who either own or do not and also allow inequality to flourish. While there are many different ways to explain the increasing inequality of income in today’s society, this paper will focus on the different perspectives of Marx and Sorensen to explain the different ways rising income inequality in society today can be explained. While Karl Marx’s main focus was on the conflict, inequality, and exploitation of what he called the “proletariat”, the people who did not own the modes of production. The opposite class of the proletariat is the “bourgeois” class. This class consists of, “people whose personal possession of the means of production provides them with the opportunity to benefit from the labour of proletarians by exploiting them” (Scott 1996:66). Even though Marx’s main theory evolved around two distinct social classes, he “focused his attention on the economic foundations of social classes”
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