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A group of individuals who have similar social status. There are many statuses in every society. As a result, many classes are also found according to them. When society is divided into different groups on the basis of birth other than, each group is called a class. Some important definitions are as follows
Defining class, Maclver and Page have written, ‘Social class is that part of the community which is separated from the rest on the basis of social status. It is clear from this definition that the basis of class is social status. That is, people of similar status form a class which is different from other classes.
In the words of Ginsberg, “Class can be said to be such a group of persons who are similar on the basis of occupation, wealth, education, way of life, thoughts, feelings, attitude and behavior, or one or two of them”. But they should have a sense of equality which makes them aware of their own group or class.” Three things are clear from this definition, class is a group of individuals, (ii) there are many bases of class-building – business, wealth, education. , lifestyle and attitude etc. and (iii) the existence of consciousness for the class, which is called class consciousness.
Mavers and Engels wrote, ‘The union of various persons together constitutes a class only when they as a class struggle against another class, otherwise they, being mutually competitive, are the adversaries of one class. Or live only. “It is clear from this definition that the basis of class is struggle. That is, without struggle, it cannot be imagined. This struggle is based on economic interests. On the basis of the above definitions, it can be said that class people are like this. There are groups which are based on social and elements and which have the qualities of class consciousness.

Characteristics of Class

Definite Hierarchy –

Social classes are divided into certain categories. The place of some of these categories is high and some are low. Those who belong to the upper class have the least number of members but the highest prestige. On the contrary, those who belong to the lower class have more number of members, but their importance and respect is the least. The natural consequence of such a situation is that the members of the upper class often take pride in being inferior to the members of the lower class. In other words, social distancing is encouraged.


Achieved System:

The basis of class is Karma. A person can be rich or poor, industrialist or laborer, specialist, professor, doctor, engineer or farmer on the basis of his work. Accordingly, his class is formed. In this way class is earned. One gets it through his own effort.
Class Conflict: This feature has been mentioned by Marx. Marx says that the struggle between classes is the element which gives a sense of the existence of classes in society. Classes cannot be imagined without struggle and this struggle is on the basis of economic interests. Thus, on the basis of the concept and characteristics of class, it is clear that class is a prevalent basis of social stratification.
Hierarchy: A major characteristic of a class is called ‘stratification’. This means that in the society there is a class of classes in which there are many classes from highest to lowest. In these classes there is clearly a hierarchy of high and low. According to this level, differences are seen in rank, prestige and facilities.
Feeling of Superiority – Inferiority: There is a feeling of inferiority in classes. The members of one class have a feeling of superiority or inferiority towards the members of other classes. For example, this feeling is clearly seen between the rich class and the poor class towards each other.

Common Life –

The members of different sections of the society lead their life in their own special way. The way of living of the rich class is different from that of the middle class and the lower class. The wealthy class considers its pride in spending more and more. The middle class is often stuck in customs and customs and the method of the lower class is completely different from both of them.

Importance of Economic Basis:

The most important task of economic status is class-building. Modern society is capitalist or technological. In these societies, there is no special relation with the membership of gender, age etc. Economically, prosperity or inferiority keeps dividing people into upper class, middle and lower class.

Openness and Shifting –

The nature of classes is open. Its meaning is that if a person is specially qualified or skilled, he can take membership of any class or can be a member of many classes together on different grounds. Reflecting this position, Botomore wrote that “whether social classes are relatively free or not, their basis is indisputably economic, but they are more than economic groups.” It is also normal for social classes to fluctuate. any poor person



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