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Contested Welfare StatesWelfare Attitudes in Europe and Beyond$
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Stefan Svallfors

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780804782524

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804782524.001.0001

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Age, Class, and Attitudes Toward Government Responsibilities1

Age, Class, and Attitudes Toward Government Responsibilities1

(p.158) Chapter Six Age, Class, and Attitudes Toward Government Responsibilities1
Contested Welfare States
Stefan Svallfors, Joakim Kulin, Annette Schnabel
Stanford University Press

This chapter argues that age and class are two fundamental principles of social stratification; therefore, it is a sociologically central task to analyze their impact on individuals' attitudes toward social arrangements. It examines to what extent do risk perceptions, beliefs about claimant groups and about the sustainability of the welfare state, and values work as micro-level mechanisms that tie class/age categories to attitudes toward government responsibilities. Findings show that perceptions about individual risk and beliefs about the extent of social problems mediated the class-attitudes relationship. Results further show a large variation across Europe in the extent to which class and age structure welfare attitudes. On average, across different dependent variables, age and class differences vary independently of each other.

Keywords:   social stratification, welfare state, age, class, Europe

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