What are the possible causes of uncertainty about identity in contemporary society?
During the Industrial Revolution, the early and middle 19th Century (a particular time in history of economical uncertainty ) Karl Marx developed a class theory which grew out of industrial economic production as a source of power through which many British identified themselves. He stated that there were two classes, the ruling class (capitalists) and the workers who were exploited by the Capitalists and that an individual’s identity was very much linked to which class he belonged.
Around the First World War and with the development of the Service Industries Weber provided a much more complex ...view middle of the document...
In 1990’s the issue of class was addressed by Labour Prime Minister (Tony Blair, quoted in The Guardian, 15 January 1999, p.3) stating that “the old establishment is being replaced by a more meritocratic middle class. A middle class who once saw themselves as working class but whose possibilities were greater than those of their parents and grandparents”.
Modern urban culture means that people are more autonomous. Once in Britain people were recognized by how they spoke and treated accordingly. Today with modern communication and the majority of the population, rich and poor, having access to the BBC, most people sound alike and people are more likely to be treated by others as they themselves see themselves. Talent is evenly distributed between rich and poor. Middle class people are exposed to the same things that rich people are. There is a more open system of who succeeds and who fails. Look at a pop star who may have been born into the poorest conditions but may be earning an income in the top tenth of the wealthy. It can be argued therefore that consumption now influences and shapes an individual’s identity. (Saunders, 1984, p.211). See page 107 Boreieu’s theory. Nowadays any working girl can go to a shop in the high street and obtain Paris Hilton gear and take on that identity.
There are remnants in Britain of a class structure, a landed aristocracy which have a certain cache because there is still a monarchy in Britain.