Sociology Index

Sexual Stratification

Social Stratification

Sexual stratification is differences of positions of men and women in the work setting and the ranking of people in a society according to sex. There is a popular view that feminism is a theory of sexual stratification and gender difference.

Sexual Stratification: A Cross-Cultural View - Alice Schlegel (Editor)
The assumption of universal male dominance is called into question in Sexual Stratification, which presents empirical evidence for its absence. Stratification is examined empirically in both traditional and modern societies and theoretically in terms of power and autonomy in economic and social structures. An assessment is made of the role ideology plays in establishing norms for sex roles and statuses.

Theories of Sexual Stratification: Toward an Analytics of the Sexual Field and a Theory of Sexual Capital - John Levi Martin, Matt George - The American tradition of action theory failed to produce a useful theory of the possible existence of trans-individual consistencies in sexual desirability. Instead, most sociological theorists have relied on market metaphors to account for the logic of sexual action.

Through a critical survey of sociological attempts to explain the social organization of sexual desiring, this article demonstrates that the market approach is inadequate, and that its inadequacies can be remedied by studying sexual action as occurring within a specifically sexual field (in Bourdieu's sense), with a correlative sexual capital. Such a conception allows for historical and comparative analysis of changes in the organization of sexual action that are impeded by the use of a market metaphor, and also points to difficulties in Bourdieu's own treatment of the body qua body.

Sexual Stratification: The Other Side of "Growth with Equity" in East Asia
Susan Greenhalgh - Population and Development Review - Vol. 11, No. 2 (Jun., 1985), pp. 265-314
Abstract: In recent decades East Asian countries have achieved remarkable levels of economic growth and interfamilial equality. These gains, however, may have been won at the cost of high or rising inequality between the sexes. Using microlevel, longitudinal data from Taiwan, the paper documents growing inequality between sons and daughters with respect to four socioeconomic resources - education, occupation, income, property - and three areas of personal autonomy - job selection, residence, and control over income. Rooted in a certain type of family system operating in a certain type of economic environment, patterns of sexual stratification are not limited to Taiwan, but are found throughout East Asia, from Hong Kong to Japan, (South) Korea, and the People's Republic of China.

Sexual Stratification: Differences in Power in the Work Setting.
First, the notion of power in the work setting and its relevance to stratification research are discussed. How this conceptualization helps in the understanding of sex differences in job positions is then sketched. Finally, the usefulness of these concepts in clarifying the similarities and differences of positions of men and women in the work setting are demonstrated empirically. The empirical analysis tests whether men and women have differing amounts of authority and autonomy holding constant other relevant variables. These variables include occupational status, education, and self employment. The analysis indicates that sex has a main effect on occupational status level, holding constant the main effects of other variables. It was demonstrated that women are less likely to be in supervisory positions than men.

Feminism as a Theory of Sexual Stratification and Gender Difference
Onyekachi Wisdom Duru, September 16, 2012
Abstract: For every nation, developed, or developing, feminism plays an important role in the emancipation and empowerment of women. Women rights, women empowerment, and women liberation constitute the circle of feminism. At any stage of the circle of feminism, something could go wrong leading to the failure of the feminist struggle. Contemporary feminist struggles have proven to be very complex and competitive, hence the need for a pragmatic approach to feminism. An analysis of feminism as theory of sexual stratification and gender difference is the focus of this paper. In other words, the paper reviews theoretically the view that feminism is a theory of sexual stratification and gender difference. The paper contends that variations of feminism are multi-dimension, transnational and multifaceted; hence gender difference and sexual stratification are only variants of a multi-dimensional whole.