class (social class)

(noun) An individual’s or group’s position within the social hierarchy typically based on power, prestige, and wealth.

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Usage Notes:

  • Plural: classes
  • The terms class and social class are used interchangeably in a sociological context.
  • The term class is difficult to define as there is no consensus definition because class can be based on many aspects of an individual or group for example education, occupation, tastes, or wealth.
  • In contrast to class, caste is another stratified system but one that does not permit individual mobility.
  • Also called socio-economic class.

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Works Consulted

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How to Cite the Definition of Class

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “class (social class).” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved December 12, 2018 (https://sociologydictionary.org/class/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

class (social class). (2013). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/class/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “class (social class).” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed December 12, 2018. https://sociologydictionary.org/class/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“class (social class).” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2013. Web. 12 Dec. 2018. <https://sociologydictionary.org/class/>.