Wealth, Power and Status

Sociology 3201                                                                                                                                  

Wealth, Power and Status                                                                                                                  

Partial List of Test Questions for the First Exam

Below are 83 multiple-choice questions that may be on the first in-class exam. 


1)  When people recognize the structural sources of their oppression they

a. are referred to as a class-for-itself

b. are referred to as a class-in-itself

c. are in false consciousness

d. clearly misunderstand the class division in society

e. they are increasingly alienated

2)  In his stages of human history Marx suggests that there was a significant difference between the first stage and all the others. What was different about this first stage?

  1. we all carried clubs
  2. individual needs were most important 
  3. people were sexually rampant
  4. there were no classes
  5. there was increased ownership of private property

3)  What aspect of society does Karl Marx focus on?

  1. the idea that all parts of a society contribute to its stability all the time
  2. the roles that each aspect of society fulfills
  3. the meanings that people attach to their behavior
  4. the sharing of “goods” of a society between different groups
  5. economic struggle between various groups

4)  Marx believed that historical change is driven by:

  1. class conflict
  2. the protestant ethic
  3. conspiracy
  4. the bourgeoisie
  5. structural strain

5)  All of the following statements about Marx’s view of religion are false EXCEPT:

  1. religion delegitimizes the statues quo and focuses people’s attention from social oppression
  2. religion is liberating
  3. religion cements a society’s collective consciousness
  4. religion is the expression of real suffering and a protest of real suffering
  5. religion reflects the economic interests of subordinate groups

6)  According to Marx, which of the following is linked to the development of revolutionary potential of the working class?

a. the heterogeneity of the working class

b. the appearance of classes which complicate the dichotomous class structure (i.e. the petty bourgeoisie)

c. the presence of false consciousness

d. the elimination of economic disparities between capitalists and wage earners

e. the development of class consciousness among the working class

7)  Communism, according to Marx, involves which of the following characteristics?

a. it is driven by moral, rather than technical, decision making

b. the proliferation of private property

c. it promotes antagonism between man and nature

d. it separates economics and morals

e. it would represent the end of human history

8) Alienated labor

a. involves the unification of mental and physical labor

b. eliminates individualistic thoughts

c. promotes the species being viewpoint

d. is disproprotionately done by the proletariat

e. is only found in capitalist societies

9)  According to Marx, in capitalist societies

a. production is primarily competitive

b. people are taught to limit their wants

c. there is equality in terms of economic resources

d. people are seen by each other mainly in terms of intrinsically valuable relationships

e. people are normally very active in the political process

10)  Praxis

a. is life activity which makes one feel more fully human

b. involves the fusion of matter and ideas

c. is the opposite as alienated labor

d. is a “labor of love”

e. all of the above

11)  Marx has been criticized for

a. ignoring the structural aspects of stratification

b. lacking a sense of praxis

c. focusing too much on economics

d. being conservative

e. promoting an unrealistic utopia

12)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, what is the weapon used by the bourgeois to force all nations to adopt the capitalistic mode of production?

a. ideology

b. the money economy

c. inexpensive commodities

d. false consciousness

e. all of the above

13)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, who are the wielders of the weapons that will ultimately destroy the capitalist class?

a. the bourgeosise

b. the feudal lords

c. the working class

d. the lumpenproletariat

e. the highly educated professional class

14)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, as the proletariat works to move beyond capitalism, what is the main concept they aim to destroy?

a. alienation

b. capitalist ideology

c. private property

d. wage inequality

e. forced labor

15)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, the victory of the proletariat

a. requires the assistance of the lumpenproletariat

b. will harken the return of primitive communism

c. is made more difficult due to the existence of a stable middle class

d. is inconceivable

e. none of the above

16)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, what did capitalists replace the feudalistic ties that emphasized a sense of natural superiority with?

a. alienated labor

b. objectification

c. self-interest and cash payment

d. the blasé attitude

e. organic solidarity

17)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, what is the main driving force behind all human history?

a. commodification

b. trade routes and weather patterns

c. species being

d. racial struggle

e. class conflict

18)  In the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians which of the following words did Marx use to describe the exploitation faced by workers in modern capitalism

a. shameless

b. blunt

c. nationalistic

d. indirect

e. covert

19)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, as the proletariat struggles against the capitalist class by forming unions, what is the greatest benefit from this conflict?

a. increasing wages

b. the ever-expanding unification of the proletariat

c. the commodification of the bourgeoisie

d. the widespread rejection of organized religion

e. expanding access to private property

20)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, factory workers are organized like what group?

a. ants

b. soldiers

c. criminals

d. machines

e. cattle

21)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, what is the result of increasingly developed modern industry as related to gender equality at work?

a. men become increasingly valued relative to women

b. women and men become increasingly similar in terms of their exploitation

c. all workers become valued more regardless of their gender

d. the workplace distinctions between men and women are enhanced

e. women become increasingly powerful relative to men in absolute terms

22)  According the reading Bourgeois and Proletarians by Marx, which of the following is the truly revolutionary class?

a. workers

b. small manufacturers

c. peasants

d. artisans

e. the lower middle class


23) Parkinson’s Law refers to which of the following?

a. in bureaucracies employees rise to the level of their incompetence

b. in bureaucracies work expands to fill the time available for its completion

c. in bureaucracies rigid routines and pressure to conform stifles creativity

d. in bureaucracies communication is almost always downward

e. bureaucracies often lose sight of the original reason (goal) of the organization

24)  In which of the following ways did Weber agree with Marx in his predictions of what would take place as a result of the rise of the capitalistic state?

a. Weber felt that working in a bureaucracy would be alienating.

b. Weber felt that bureaucracy would cease to exist in modern society.

c. Weber felt more strongly than Marx that social class (i.e. economics) would be the dominant criteria of stratification.

d. All of the above

25) According to Weber, which of the following types of actions and becoming less common in modern societies?

a. Traditional action

b. Value-rational action

c. Affective action

d. Rationally purposeful action

e. All of the above

26)  For Weber, which of the following is the most obvious example of rationalization of modern capitalism?

a. alienation

b. commodification

c. pseudocharisma

d. authority

e. bureaucracy

27)  Which of the following is an aspects of Weber’s typology of bureaucracy?

  1. Bureaucracies are designed as a bottom-up hierarchy
  2. Bureaucracies rely on workers to challenge authority
  3. Bureaucracies produce individuals who exercise conscientious autonomy
  4. Bureaucracies are designed to be inefficient
  5. Bureaucracies are meritocratic

28)  According to Weber, what is the form of social action that is dominant in modern societies?

  1. charismatic
  2. rationally purposeful
  3. value-rational
  4. traditional
  5. objective

29)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, the process of making charismatic power traditional is referred to as which of the following

a. pseudocharisma

b. transformative rule

c. routinization

d. charismatic succession

e. none of the above

30)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, charisma in its purest form is which of the following?

a. authoritarian

b. derived from the acknowledgement of the ruled

c. legitimated in an uncoerced way

d. free of the threat of punishment

e. based on tradition and logic

31)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, which of the following is part of the administrative ideal of legal-rational rule?

a. a subjective outlook based on personal opinion

b. impartiality

c. informal and irrational rules

d. arbitrariness and unpredictability

e. all of the above are listed as part of the administrative ideal

32)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, the purest form on domination associated with the patriarchal structure of administration is referred to as which of the following?

a. totalitarianism

b. hedonism

c. sultanism

d. atheism

e. alienation

33)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, how can the problem of succession be solved?

a. the leader naming his/her own successor

b. inheritance passed onto a blood relative

c. waiting passively for a new leader to emerge

d. anointment based on ritual

e. all of the above

34)  According to The Three Types of Legitimate Rule by Max Weber, which of the following are NOT associated with charisma?

a. magical capabilities

b. beuracratic authority

c. heroism

d. oratorical powers

e. all of the above


35)  Which of the following is associated with Gemeinschaft?

a. strong solidarity based on tradition

b. “sharp” and “cool”

c. blasé attitude

d. species being

e. people are means

36)  Which of the following is most closely associated with Gemeinschaft?

a. rational decision-making

b. distrust and isolation

c. emotionally hollow relationships

d. limited privacy

e. isolation and anonymity

37)  Which of the following is most closely associated with Gesellschaft?

a. calculating self-interest

b. group over self

c. strong solidarity

d. religion

e. community

38)  Which of the following characteristics is consistent with Gemeinshaft?

a. People are motivated by self-interest

b. People tend to view each other as a means of achieving their own goals

c. “Everything is from the heart”

d. Scientifically driven production

e. All of the above


39) According to Durkheim, what holds modern societies together?

a. informal social control

b. the similarities among people

c. functional interdependence

d. a common religion

e. all of the above

40)  Which of the following is associated with Mechanical Solidarity?

a. achieved statuses

b. arranged marriages

c. secularization

d. formal social control

e. scientific inquiry

41)  According to Durkheim, which of the following is false

a. statuses are achieved within organic solidarity

b. functional interdependence is associated with organic solidarity

c. spontaneous social control is less common in modern societies

d. the transition from organic to mechanical solidarity is increasing rapid

e. societies are becoming increasingly secular


42)  According to Simmel, the “fragmentation of self”

a. does not allows a person to be creative

b. is rarely forced upon an individual

c. prohibits a person from taking positive advantage of situations

d. refers to the process through which individuals in modern societies are forced to play many roles for

   different audiences

e. all of the above

43)  Simmel focuses on which of the following opposing pairs?

a. individual and society

b. gemeinshaft and gesellshaft

c. functional importance and scarcity of personnel

d. bourgeoisie and proletariat

e. rationalization and bureaucracy

44) Which of the following statements is true about Simmel’s ideas concerning modern societies?

a. Simmel agreed with Durkheim that the prevalence of a precise division of labor in modern societies would reduce conflict between the individual and society, and promote solidarity.

b. Simmel embraced Marx’s concept of species being

c. Simmel felt that competition and conflict among individuals would inevitably lead to alienation and rationalization

d. Simmel argued that capitalistic societies could allow for more freedom of individuals than Marx would admit

e. none of the above are true

45) The blasé attitude

a. enhibits one’s ability to react with energy to his or her environment

b. promotes class consciousness

c. is less common among modern urban residents

d. results from reducations in commodification

e. enhances the emancipation of the working class

46)  Which one of the following is mentioned as a consequence of urban development in Simmel’s reading?

  1.  anger towards society
  2.  social connection among individuals
  3.  growth and development of the sense of community
  4.  reduction of the fragmentation of self
  5.  distrust of others

47)  How does Simmel’s theory of modern society differ from that of Marx?

  1. he believed modern society fostered unity rather than conflict
  2. he believed modern society promoted confinement rather than freedom
  3. he believed modern society was irrational rather than rational
  4. he believed modern society was an event rather than a collection of individuals
  5. he believed modern society was less friendly compared with traditional societies

48)  According to Simmel’s The Metropolis and Mental Life, which of the following characterizes the development of modern culture?

a. the individual overcoming the demands of society to conform

b. the rise of the objective spirit over the subjective spirit

c. individuals summoning their uniqueness in order to protect their personal core

d. individuals rejecting their role as a cog in an enormous organization

e. all of the above

49)  According to Simmel’s The Metropolis and Mental Life, which of the following best describes what he calls the blasé attitude?

a. the objective relinquishing of power to society as a whole

b. the dominant paradigm found in rural villages

c. the subjective reflection of the completely internalized money economy

d. the adoption of the gesellshaft orientation

e. the inevitable result of long-term alienated labor

50)  According to Simmel’s The Metropolis and Mental Life, which of the following is forced upon individuals in urban settings?

a. the money economy

b. punctuality

c. exactness

d. calculability

e. all of the other answers

51)  According to Simmel’s The Metropolis and Mental Life, in comparison to small town life, the metropolis is characterized by which of the following?

a. deeply felt and emotional relationships

b. ascribed statuses

c. mechanical solidarity

d. the “subjective spirit”

e. calculating exactness

52)  According to Simmel, which of the following is possible through fashion?

a. ego involvement

b. differential rewards

c. total conformity to the demands of urban living

d. impression management

e. the looking glass self

53)  According to Simmel’s The Metropolis and Mental Life, the money economy reduces all quality and individuality to which of the following?

a. subjective differentiation

b. utilitarian value

c. species being

d. the question “how much?”

e. functional importance


54)  According to Sahlins

a. Members of hunting and gathering societies have curbed their capitalistic instincts.

b. Modern societies have resolved the conflict between wants and needs.

c. Hunting and gathering societies are plagued by materialistic wants just like capitalistic societies.

d. Members of hunting and gathering societies work less than those in modern societies

e. Modern societies have limited their materialistic wants.

55)  According to Sahlins, which of the following is true?

a. Modern man judges hunters and gatherers using appropriate standards.

b. Poverty is an invention of civilization.

c. Hunger is more of a problem in hunting and gathering societies than in modern societies.

d. Affluence can only be obtained by producing much.

e. None of the other answers are true.

56)  Sahlins considers ancient hunter gathers affluent because:

  1. their material production was limited and they desired a lot
  2. they filled their free time with unalienated labor
  3. their material wants were easily satisfied
  4. they associated material things with status
  5. they were an egalitarian society

57)  According to Salhins, in the game of consumer free choice, every acquisition is which of the following?

a. a deprivation

b. a victory

c. means to another acquisition

d. an end in itself

e. a step toward freedom from wants

58)  According to Salhins, in modern societies scarcity is created to do what?

a. decrease demand

b. enhance alienation

c. increase profitability

d. produce the fragmentation of self

e. foster contentment among the haves


59)  Which of the following is explicitly stated, by Davis and Moore, as a potential reward for functionally important positions in society?

a. humor and diversion

b. the intrinsic joy of work

c. species being

d. alienated labor

e. political power

60)  According to Tumin, social stratification has all but which of the following effects on the subordinate classes of society:

a. it limits the discovery of their talent.

b. it enhances their positive self-concept

c. it encourages hostility and distrust among them.

d. it limits their loyalty toward society

e. all of the other answers are correct

61)  Which of the following helps to determine the scarity of personnel in a society?

a. functional importance

b. unequal rewards

c. the size of a society

d. training

e. functionless ownership

62)  According to Davis and Moore

a. individuals can purchase access to functionally important occupations

b. occupations are rewarded less when they are more functionally important

c. people are naturally motivated to work

d. prestige tends to be higher in situation where membership in given profession is rigidly controlled

e. functionless ownership is not possible

63)  Which of the following are characteristics that Davis and Moore associate with human nature?

a. apathy and disinterest

b. unhappiness and envy

c. evil and corruption

d. self-interest and laziness

e. hard work and altruism

64)  Tumin is critical of Davis and Moore’s theory for which of the following reasons?

  1.  their concept “functionally importance” is too narowly defined.
  2.  their theory overstates the range of talents typically found within societies.
  3.  it is clear that training is truly a sacrifice.
  4.  it ignores the possibility that individuals work for the “joy of work” or a sense of “social duty”.

e. their theory comes from the conflict perspective.

65)  Davis-Moore thesis suggests that stratification:

  1. promotes inefficiency in the productive process.
  2. is related to class conflict.
  3. has detrimental consequences for the operation of society.
  4. is a function of the distribution of power
  5. none of the other answers are suggested by Davis and Moore

66)  According to Davis and Moore’s Some Principles of Stratification, what is necessary as cultural heritage grows?

a. functional importance

b. increased specialization

c. social stratification

d. humor and diversion

e. talent and training

67)  According to Davis and Moore’s Some Principles of Stratification, why does it matter who gets placed into what position within the division of labor?

a. most positions are equal in terms of functionally important

b. some positions require special talents or training

c. because it doesn’t matter whether some positions are performed with diligence

d. some positions provide a greater sense of praxis

e. all of the other answers are correct

68)  According to Davis and Moore’s Some Principles of Stratification, which of the following are presented as polar opposites?

a. familistic and capitalistic basis of social organization

b. class organized and class unorganized alienation

c. mobile and immobile degree of opportunity

d. equalitarian and unequalitarian magnitude of gesellshaft differences

e. specialized and unspecialized division of opporunity

69)  According to Davis and Moore’s Some Principles of Stratification, which of the following is listed as a control that keeps political power from becoming complete?

a. the fact that rulers represent their self interest

b. the fact that the ruler has power based on his/her office and nothing else

c. that rulers are rarely dependent on others for technical assistance

d. the fact that ego expansion is limited by the division of labor

e. the large number of political leaders relative to the size of the general population

70)  What role in society in society is particularly difficult for Davis and Moore’s theory difficult to explain

a. clergy

b. political leaders

c. functionless owners

d. professional athletes

e. elementary school teachers

71)  How would Davis and Moore describe a college education

a. an unnecessary investment

b. a burden and a sacrifice

c. a route to economic stagnation

d. the reward of excellence

e. a privilege of the worthy


72)  According to Ayn Rand, which of the following are legitimate roles of government?

a. providing a social safety-net for disadvantaged citizens

b. requiring citizens to rationally participate in the democratic process

c. enhancing the productivity through financial assistance to corporations

d. promotion of capitalism in third world nations through loans to poor nations

e. protecting citizens from physical force

73)  What of the following “theories of good” does Rand object to?

a. The species being theory

b. The intrinsic theory

c. The objective theory

d. The essentialist theory

e. all of the above

74)  Upon which of the following do Ayn Rand and Karl Marx agree?

a. humans have a need to creatively express themselves through their work

b. mysticism distorts reality

c. individuals should rationally reflect upon how they consume products in capitalistic societies.

d. all of the other answers

75)  In order for man to exercise his true essence in capitalist society, according to Rand, what is required?

  1. social unity
  2. equality
  3. brotherhood
  4. freedom
  5. egalitarianism

76)  If a person gives up a position of power and influence to become a fortune-teller, Rand would assume that is behavior is:

  1. selfish, because they are deceiving other people
  2. time consuming, because they have to learn how to read a crystal ball
  3. honorable, because they gave up their privilege to help others
  4. irrational, because they are giving up their self interest
  5. freeing, because they are doing what they like to do

77)  Which one of the following is a feature of the subjective view of good:

  1. good bears direct relation to reality
  2. good is good in and of itself
  3. good is intrinsic in certain actions
  4. good is evaluated through the facts
  5. good is a matter of arbitrary choice

78)  According to Ayn Rand, capitalism created the legal institution of:

a. political economy

b. private property

c. serfdom

d. collective good

e. feudalism

79)  According to Ayn Rand, a particular reason why capitalism is better than other economic systems is because:

a. it utilizes a nation’s social surplus

b. it treats mankind as an entity

c. it promotes the common good

d. it fosters the idea of freedom

e. it promotes and utilizes the philosophy of altruism

80)  Which three qualities are important in Ayn Rand’s definition of a true individual?

a. thinking, knowledge, and rational action

b. knowledge, altruism, and justice

c. creating a social surplus, rational action, freedom

d. emotionalism, thinking based in reality, freedom

e. trading by voluntary consent, working for the common good, knowledge

81)  What is an integral part of Ayn Rand’s definition of capitalism?

a. communial ownership of some property

b. individual rights

c. a government that deephasizes military spending

d. the conformist mindset

e. it allows the best allocation of national resources

82) Ayn Rand states that capitalism is the only social system based on an objective theory of moral values. An objective theory of values includes the concept that:

a. issues of good and evil are based on subjective choice

b. good is inherent in certain things or actions, regardless of context or consequences

c. good is a product of a person’s consciousness and emotions

d. good is based in reality and evaluated by a person’s rational consciousness

e. the common good of society is superior to the individual good of its members

83)  Ayn Rand’s definition of capitalism includes a free market where people trade goods that have value to them. She makes a distinction between items with philosophically objective value and those with socially objective value. Which of the following statements does NOT reflect her distinction between philosophical and socially objective values?

a. a rational person will decide what objects are socially objectively valuable to him/her.

b. items that are philosophically objectively valuable are not necessarily the most popular.

c. the market value of a product represents its philosophically objective value.

d. a famous Renaissance sculpture could be considered philosophically valuable.

e. a company that wants to make money should produce goods with socially objective value.

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