When a society is divided by social stratification, what do these divisions mean for the lives of those high and low statuses?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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There are many ways in which the lives of those on the higher and lower ends of the hierarchy are affected by stratification.  Essentially, the more crystallized the stratification is, the more these groups will be affected.

High status group members are very privileged.  They will tend to have better education, better health care, better life chances, and more options in their lives.  They will not know much about what it is like to be in need or to face material difficulties.  They will be very used to being "on top."

Low status group members will experience the opposite.  They will have fewer life chances and options that they can take advantage of.  They will get used to being at the bottom of society.  This will tend to lead them to have much more stress in their lives.  The added stress and the poorer access to health care (as well as other things like less access to healthy foods) will cause them to have more medical problems.  They will be more likely to become victims of crimes and they will have shorter life expectancies.

In a stratified society, those on the top will have much better lives in most ways than those on the bottom.  

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