I learned from my sociology class that poverty exist even in highly developed country such as the United States extending to the slum areas of India’s urbane cities. Poverty permeates the different levels of socio-cultural identities an individual has such as its income, gender and status. The advent of modern technologies brought about many challenges that aggravate poverty resulting to a creation of its two faces. The two faces of poverty, I learned form my sociology class consist of American and Indian style of poverty.
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In Macionis’ Global Stratification, it was stated that more than eighty percent of the world’s nations fall in the middle-income category, while one-third of impoverish people live in cities, as others mostly inhabit villages and farms like their ancestors (227). Such being the case, the prospect of finding a profitable employment which could support the basic needs of the family and improve their lives is very slim. The cheap labor market in Bangladesh’s case by a developed country is subject to exploitation (226) and felt in poor country having a domino effect due to absence of access to the basic services like schools, medical care, adequate housing, and even safe drinking water (228). Women’s work in rich societies are undervalued, underpaid, or overlooked while in poor societies, they face even greater disadvantages because most of them work in sweatshops with long hours and with meager income (234). I was stunned by these facts as this serve as a wake up calls for me to do my best in my course. Poverty is often associated with frustration and violence in rich countries, while India’s people understood poverty, there are no restless young men, does not loiter, no drug peddlers and no violence. Finally, Mother Teresa once said, that “Americans have angry poverty, while Indians “have a happy poverty” (237).
Being a student, the knowledge learned in my sociology class is worth pondering knowing the ill effects of poverty on the well-being of the people as well as the economic recovery of the poor countries. Rich countries must endeavor to extend financial aid to the poor countries to help boost their economy and make gainful employment for the poor citizens in order to alleviate their plight and have a happy environment in the end. It is on this context that the class was very enlightening for I have learned to appreciate what I have with a hope that I can make a difference to my world and generation to combat poverty and its by-product.
Macionis, John. Society. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2001.
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