Social According to Marxist, the major cause

Social inequality is the existence ofunequal opportunities and outcomes for individuals in different socialpositions or statuses in society. Social inequality is a multi-dimensionalissue meaning there are different levels of inequality. There is inequalitybetween individuals (gender, race, ethnicity, regions), Inequality withincountries and Global inequality between countries.

(UN Capital DevelopmentFund, 2013. When looking to define poverty it is important to note that povertycan be separated into two categories, absolute poverty and relative poverty.Absolute poverty can be defined as, “a condition characterised by severedeprivation of basic human needs, including food, safe drinking water,sanitation facilities, health, shelter or education” (United Nations,1995). Whereas Relative poverty is viewing poverty in comparison to thephysical possession of others (Townsend, 1979). According to Townsend, when anindividual lacks the resources to obtain the types of diet, participate in theactivities and have the living conditions and amenities which are widelyencouraged or approved, in the societies to which they belong, they are livingin poverty (Townsend, 1979). This definition helps to measure the gap betweenthe rich and the poor.

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Social exclusion can be defined as, processes that blockbasic individual or community rights, gags opportunities and basic resourcesthat are often readily available to habitats of a society and vital to thewell-being and social integration of a people. (Butler and Watt 2007). In otherwords, social exclusion deprives individuals of their rights and freedoms tofully engage on social aspects of the society i.e. in matters politics, socialand economic. Inequality, poverty and social exclusion are all connected asthey have a knock-on effect on one another. Inequality causes poverty and as aresult, poverty causes social excision, this is known as the cycle of poverty.

This essay will explain how these social issues are connected and interlinkwith one another.  Inequality, poverty and socialexclusion are topics that have previously been explored by social theorist suchas Marxist. According to Marxist, the major cause of poverty is inequality oruneven distribution of wealth and income he says this a main consequence ofcapitalism. Capitalism is an economic and political system in which a country’sindustry is controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.Marxist argues that capitalism produces inegalitarian social structures andthat inequality is transferred from one generation to another through theopportunities and environmental services that surround each individual. Hebelieves that inequality, poverty, and social exclusion are interlinked buthowever cannot be eradicated without fundamental changes being made in the modeof production.

  Inequality is one of the leadingcauses of poverty in the UK. Inequality between individuals in society is knownas social inequality, this refers to gender, race and ethnicity inequality. Oneform of social inequality which occurs in the U.K. is the gender gap. Thegender gap prefers to inequality between men and women.

The gender gap showshow unequal access to opportunities maintains inequality between the sexes. Oneaspect of the gender gap is the pay gap, which refers to the difference inwages and salaries between men and women. The gender pay gap for full-timeemployees in 2016 was 9.4%, meaning the average pay for full-time femaleemployees was 9.4% lower than for full-time male employees. (Office forNational Statistics, 2016).

Due to this pay difference between men and women,women are more susceptible to relative poverty as they may not be able toafford the items that their male counterpart can as they get paid less. Thisshows how inequality can lead to poverty, in this case, relative poverty.However, on a bigger scale, inequality can lead to absolute poverty. Inequalityin the distribution of money can cause absolute poverty as if money is notdistributed equally, this creates a divide between the rich and the poor.Meaning the rich getting richer and the poor struggle to maintain survival andmeet their basic human needs which could lead to starvation and homelessness i.e.absolute poverty.   Both forms of poverty, absolute andrelative, could potentially lead to social exclusion.

Levitas (1998) analysesthe literature around the subject and provides three key social policiesrelating to the causes and solutions of social exclusion. She calls these;Redistribution Discourse (RED), Social Integration Discourse (SID) and Moral’Underclass’ Discourse (MUD). The first RED is firmly linked to poverty, itsees social exclusion as both a consequence and cause of poverty, its aims areto tackle poverty and redistribute the wealth, and more recently power.

Itssolution is mainly focused creating an inclusive society, which is what Listerstates, is the antonym of social exclusion. SID, a social integrationistdiscourse, again sees social exclusion as a cause of poverty, but this timethrough the means of unemployment. Their solution is to support the unemployedwhilst encouraging them to find work, effectively making sure everyone iseconomically active. Finally, MUD (right wing version), which places anincreased emphasis on moral and cultural causes of poverty, and the ‘dangerousclass’, the solution to social exclusion as Levitas states is full employment,with a reduction in benefits and return to traditional family values, inparticular reducing the number of lone parents, and never married mothers).From Levitas’ analyse it is very clear to see there is a clear connectionbetween poverty and social exclusion.   The Urban Ecology is a visibleexample of how poverty leads to social exclusion. Urban ecology is the study ofecological processes in urban environments, this includes the study of ghettos.

A ghetto is a part of a city that is occupied by the poor and minority groups,these areas are usually considered slum areas and often have high levels ofcrime and deviance. Individuals who live in ghettos are often marginalised andsocially excluded from the rest of society and this all comes down to the factthat they are poor. They are usually trapped in the cycle of poverty andtherefore have limited opportunities, therefore elucidating the impression thatpoverty leads to social exclusion which then leads to inequality. Relativepoverty can also lead to social exclusion but on a smaller scale, for instance,if an individual was in relative poverty this would result in them unable toafford leisure activities that their peers can.

Therefore limiting the opportunities,they have to socialise with their peers which could result in them becomingsocially excluded from their companions simply because they cannot afford tosocialise.   In conclusion, poverty, inequalityand social exclusion are all connected and as a result, have a knock-on effecton one another. When looking into the causes of poverty, social exclusion andinequality must be considered in order to gain a clearer picture of the issue.Similarly, when looking into the causes of social exclusion, poverty andinequality must be considered as these social issues are all interlinked.

Thesethree social issues all play a part in contributing to an individual’s standardof life. These issues have previously been explored by several socialtheorists, one of which include Marxists who blamed these social issues oncapitalism. Levitas also explored these social issues however her focus was onthe literature surrounding these issues, never the less she still came to theconclusion that all three social issues connect with each other. 


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