In Der Arme Simmel is concerned with poverty as a form and sociological constellation in a particular sense — those in receipt of public assistance. Also, although he refers to the ‘poor man’, the ‘poor woman’ is also implied. His focus is the situation of ‘the poor’ that arises by virtue of their receiving social assistance. Poverty, in this sense, is a ‘special status’. With the state, alongside the family, trade unions and charitable bodies acting, according to Simmel, on behalf of the ‘whole society’, the societal or ‘macro’ level, and the ‘state’ is more explicitly to the fore in his analysis than it was for ‘fashion’.


Social Process Public Assistance Relative Poverty Absolute Poverty Downward Mobility 
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Copyright information

© Henry Schermer and David Jary 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henry Schermer
    • 1
  • David Jary
    • 1
  1. 1.Staffordshire UniversityUK

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