How do social institutions contribute to the problem of poverty?

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You can argue that social institutions contribute to the problem of poverty by creating a system that perpetuates that problem.  Let's look at this from two ideological perspectives.

A liberal might say that the public schools contribute to poverty.  Liberals would say that public schools are underfunded (especially in poor...

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You can argue that social institutions contribute to the problem of poverty by creating a system that perpetuates that problem.  Let's look at this from two ideological perspectives.

A liberal might say that the public schools contribute to poverty.  Liberals would say that public schools are underfunded (especially in poor areas).  They would say, therefore, that underfunding leads to poor students getting an inferior education.  This education makes it harder for them to escape poverty.

A conservative might say that the social institution of big government helps to cause poverty.  Such a person would say that our big government gives welfare type benefits to people and thus encourages them to avoid work and to avoid behaviors that would be likely to bring them out of poverty.

So our social institutions of education and government can be said to contribute to the problem of poverty.

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I agree completely with number 2. Schools are a big part of the problem with it comes to the perpetuation of poverty. Unfortunately, safety net programs can also have that effect. Welfare is important for helping poor mothers, but unfortunately single mothers or poor mothers have been known to have more children to get more welfare money. This is the type of abuse that gives the system a bad name. Most agree that the welfare programs don't do enough to help the poor enter the workforce and lead independent, productive lives.
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