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Landet utan överklass: En studie om hur ekonomisk stratifiering och klass skildras i läroböcker i samhällskunskap för gymnasiet
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, School of Social Sciences.
2011 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 15 credits / 22,5 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The gap between rich and poor is increasing. Economic inequality is widening on a global level but also in individual countries like the USA and Sweden. The consequences for individuals are great considering life chance, health, educational level and standard of living.


The curriculum for social studies from 1994 as well as the curriculum coming in effect 2011 emphasize the importance of teaching social class as a tool to interpret development in Sweden as well as the world. Earlier studies have looked at how much and in what way textbooks discuss gender, sexuality and ethnicity but social class has been overlooked.


This study examines if social class is described in textbooks written for high school. The study also analyzes in which way social class is described.  The theoretical tools used are two traditional ways of interpreting class – as a grading between groups with different incomes and economic resources or as relational between groups that are dependent on each other but whose interests are conflicting. The study looks at three books in social science form the major publishers. The first research question is answered by using both a quantitative method while the second question uses a qualitative text analysis.


The results show that the books barely discuss social class.  The discussion is primarily in chapters on the welfare state, economy and international issues. The definition of class is vague and it is not used in other texts in the books instead the books talk about rich and poor. The results also show that the parts of the books that discuss class and economic inequality mainly see it as a gradation between groups and not as a relation between economic groups with conflicting interests.


In sum, books in social studies do not talk about class in an adequate way which gives the teacher little support in following the curriculum.  The students may thus miss an important tool to interpret the world. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 39 p.
Keyword [sv]
skola, samhällskunskap, läromedel, klass, textanalys
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-12681OAI: diva2:424154
Subject / course
Political Science
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-09-13 Created: 2011-06-17 Last updated: 2011-09-13Bibliographically approved

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