Social Class and Life Chances

The life chances as described by Max Weber give vivid insights on the chances that people have to succeed based on their social and economic status in the society. This means that there are   certain opportunities that people can get to improve their quality if life depending on the king of exposure they have access to and the availability of resources at their disposal. This can be translated to mean that individual who have access to more resources and who have a lot of exposure stand a better chance of becoming successful as compared to those who do not have adequate access to these things. 

Based on this theory, it is important to consider the social and economic characteristics of those the communities living in the Long island. Based on a research that was conducted by Dr. Martin Cantor, there are a number of issues about Long Island that distinguish it from other part of the United States. Most of the young people living in the Long island seem to be unhappy with the prevailing conditions in the Island. The survey determined that a huge percentage of the residents of the Island are leaving the Island to other places that make the island more prone to several other problems as compared to other states in the US (Cantor, 2014).

Long island faces several challenges that threaten the success of young people of the Island and the future generations as well.  However, parts of the Island seem to be doing well as compared to others. Some of the social and economic characteristics of the people lining in Long island are as discussed below:


The housing condition for the people living in the Long island is not very good. Most of the people living in this place are faced with a number of housing problems.  The first and major challenge that the people in the Long Island face is the issue relating to the expense of the houses. Most of the houses that are in the Long Island are very expensive. This makes it very hard for residents to cope in the area hence some of them opting to leave the town for other places.  There are those young people who also look for jobs in the Island and need houses in areas that are in walk able distances from the places of work, most them cannot find such houses hence finding it difficult to cope (Cantor, 2014). The housing problems in the Long Island makes those people living in other parts of America have different life chances from those living in the long island. This can be attributed to the fact that other American Citizens have affordable housing in places where they can easily reach their places of work. This makes it makes those who work in the Long Island unable to even save or to save very little because of the housing expenses I the area. 


The education levels in the Island are good. There are several learning institutions of higher learning. There are many schools and colleges in the island thereby making education a resource that is readily available for the communities in the area. The Milennials who are the majority in the area have a lot of access to education. There is a large number of people with post high school education.  The stony Brook school is one of the most outstanding institution in the  Suffolk county Many have undergraduate post graduate and doctoral degrees thereby making them have good life chances. The high standards of education make the residents of this Island have similar chances to other Americans because they are to do similar jobs to the other.

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Living standards

America is one of the countries with the highest living standards in the world. However, the challenge that is seen in the Long island is serious thereby lowering the life chances of the people living in the Island. The residents of the area complain of high taxation, and high prices of commodities which make it very hard for them to cope. This as explained by Cantor has been the cause of mass migration of young people from the area, thereby making the area lose it future middle class.


Patchogue village has a revitalized economic system that has made the county a popular destination for investors. The village has since 2004 made a huge progress in the in the area of investment with over 150 million dollars worth of investment pumped into the economy. This makes the village a popular spot for young people seeking employment opportunities. The increased economic growth of the village can be attributed to several factors with major factor being that of the upgrade of the sewerage treatment plant in the area. This has enabled cleaner and safer water to be available to people.

Transport and Communication

The Patchogue village and Stony Brook areas in Long Island have a well developed transport network. Despite the claims that some parts of Stony Brook have poor road networks, the railroad that connects the New York City to the community is a well developed system that that enables a huge percentage of people to travel in the area.  Patchogue village has a well developed road network. The network has attracted investors to the area and enabled more opportunities to be created in the people.

Communication has also vastly developed in the two villages to a large extent. There are several news papers in the Stony Brook including; the Stony Brook Statesman, the Village Time Herald, Stony Brook Press among others. The SBU television is very crucial for communication and WUSB radio (FM) also plays a key role in exposing the people and ensuring that their life chances at par with the other people. There are various media of communications that are used to expose the people who live in these areas.

Population Demographics

According to the 2010 census, the Stony Brook area has a total population of about 13000 people on the other hand there are about 12000 residents in the Patchogue village. This means that the areas are not so much densely populated. Therefore, this means that, the population is not too large and hence can be served by the government without any problems.

The social and cultural capital will be very significant in determining success of any two individuals. For instance the issues that have been highlighted above are likely to shade more light on the way things are one. If I have a twin brother and we are brought up in different environments, then the difference in the cultures of the places we are brought up is likely to influence that success. The levels of exposure and access to education will determine who  succeeds more. From the argument by (Bourdieu, 1986), cultural capital that is grouped into three categories which are the embodiment state, objectivity state and the institutionalized state are very crucial in determine the success probability. These factors combined with the social capital that is basically about the an individual’s ability to access resources necessary for their success, has a huge role to play when it comes to in all the aspect of an individual’s development and success prospects.

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