full notes on poverty, wealth and welfare

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Wealth, poverty and welfare (Sociology,
Unit 1 resist)
Definition and ways of measuring poverty
Absolute definition of poverty (Rowntree)
"Having the basic needs for a healthy life" Rowntree (1901)
Five basic needs that he outlined...
Shelter
Heat
Food
Clothing
Water
Problems with the definition...
People's view of what defines someone as poor changes over time.
The meaning of " health" changes over time. Another argument the term `healthy' is a
social construct; different societies define the word differently.
Using the definition in 2014 very few people are poor, according to the definition no one
lives in poverty in western societies, which is obviously not the case as people still feel poor
(Subjective poverty).
One positive of the definition is that poverty can be compared at different points in history
and also across societies.
Operationalization problems
Basic needs are food, shelter, heat, clothing and water but he doesn't outline the quantity
neither the quality of the products. Lower social classes can obviously only afford worse
quality.
Presumes families live on a no waste budget. Assumes Families buy food just for its
nutritional value, ignoring cultural norms such as tea (which holds very little nutritional
value)
Presumes that everyone needs the same volume of food and water when in fact people
working in labour intensive jobs need more energy and nutrients. The same argument can be
used for heat; older people will need more heating due to poor their pore immune systems.
Relative definition of poverty (Townsend)
"Individuals, families and groups in the population can be said to be in poverty when they lack the
resources to obtain the types of diet, participate in the activities, and have the living conditions
and amenities which are customary, or at least widely encouraged or approved, in the societies to
which they belong. Their resources are so seriously below those commanded by the average
individual or family that they are, in effect, excluded from ordinary patterns, customs and
activities" (Townsend 1979)

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Individuals can be said to be in relative poverty when they lack the recourses to obtain the
amentias that are socially acceptable within society they live.
12 specifications that Townsend believed were normal in British society...…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Some of the necessities that made it onto the social exclusion and poverty specifications 2012...
The public chooses items essential for survival, such as adequate food and a warm, dry home. Top
of the list for adults...
96% Heating to warm living areas of the home
94% Damp-free home
91% Two meals a day for adults
And for children...…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Theories explaining the existence of poverty
Behavioral
Lewis
Culture of poverty theory. Once established the culture of poverty carry's itself from generation to
generation through children (aged 6 and 7). Lewis estimated that 20% of the poor in the USA
adopt the values and behaviors outlined below.
He outlined that the culture had values that lead to certain traits...…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
1. Illegitimacy
He states that in 1979 Brittan had an illegitimate birth rate of 10.6%, low compared to other
western counterparts, by 1988 the rate had increased to 25.6% higher than most western
societies and just smaller than the USAs. He suggested that in the lower social classes in some
areas the absence of a father has become a social norm.…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
attitudes and values of the underclass were past through generation to generation. 60% of
births to woman under the age of 21 have both registered patents. This shows that most
children do not grow up with single parents and have two parental figures in their lives.
Anthony Heath (1990) Underclass attitudes- He collected data from such sources as the
British Survey Election to test the weather there was an `underclass' with the attitudes that
Murray states.…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Out sourcing- Anything that can transmitted through the internet can be outsourced to a
country that's labour is cheaper reducing the power of the worker within the UK.
Outsourcing occurs internally within a country especially within the building and cleaning
sector. Working for an agency rather than a company has a number of disadvantages
including the lack of pension and paid holrday.…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Examine the ways in which poverty may be functional for society (24 marks) January 2011
Using the material from item 3B and elsewhere, assess the view that the attitudes and the
behavior of the poor themselves are responsible for poverty (24 marks) June 2011
Suggest two reasons `why some occupations attract higher pay than others' (4 marks) Specimen
paper 2014
Using material from item 3B and elsewhere, assess the view that poverty is caused by the class…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
Behavioral Situational Structural
Typically ethnic groups have Recent arrivals take time to Institutional racism
larger families, this means settle in and get established within society, can be
that the income of the within the society argued has been
`breadwinner' is stretched. Many come from poorer created by ruling
Do not learn the language so countries so come very little class so working class
struggle to find employment money so easily fall into is divided.…read more

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Kieran Podbury
St Benedicts Catholic Upper School
13FRA
market so are therefore not
much `use' for capitalism
thus are poor.
Elderly
1 in 6 pensioners (1.8 million or 16% of pensioners in the UK) live in poverty, defined as 60% of
median i ncome after housing costs Pensioners are also the biggest group of people on the brink of
poverty with 1.2 million on the edge.
Behavioral Situational Structural
Less adoptable Lack Fixed incomes through pensions being
Failure to make provisions rescores undermined by inflation.…read more

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