- The Japan Sociological Society
- 社会学評論 (ISSN:00215414)
- vol.48, no.4, pp.419-437, 1998-03-31 (Released:2009-10-19)
The objective of this paper is to explore empirically the new dimensions of social stratification in an age of postmaterial society. Japanese society has been changing its main social concern since 1980s, from 'Having' (possession) to 'Being' (existence). In keeping with this trend, major dimensions of social stratification begin to change from traditional status variables such as occupational status, income, educational credential to those of lifestyles and ways of life. First, using the method of factor analysis, I extract two lifestyle variables as the ways of living which are composed of achieved status orientation and relational status orientation, and then clarify that these two are the independent variables not determined by the traditional status variables. Secondly, I analyze the effects of two lifestyle variables on status anxiety, status quo and postmaterial orientation, then verify that relational status orientation will become the new dimension of stratification system in postmaterial society. Finally, I propose life politics focusing on quality of life as the way of living instead of status politics. While status politics concerns the achieved status orientation, life politics concerns the relational status orientation.