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Social Class

  • James D. Davidson
  • Ralph E. Pyle
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)

Abstract

This chapter examines the relationship between religion and the vertical ranking of persons and families in terms of their access to resources such as wealth, political power, and prestige. Part I contends that “fair shares” (or conflict) theory is better suited to the study of religion and stratification than either “fair play” (functionalist) theory or “religious economy” (rational choice) theory. Part II shows how fair shares theory illuminates our understanding of “religious stratification” in America (that is, the ranking of religious groups in terms of their members’ access to power, privilege, and prestige). Part III shows how the fair shares approach also helps to explain religion’s dual role of perpetuating social inequality at the same time that it promotes social equality.

Keywords

Social Inequality Religious Group American Sociological Review General Social Survey Fair Share 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • James D. Davidson
    • 1
  • Ralph E. Pyle
    • 2
  1. 1.Purdue UniversityWest Lafayette
  2. 2.Michigan State UniversityEast Lansing

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