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Development & Social Status

  • Date Submitted: 12/09/2013 11:47 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 46.8 
  • Words: 1143
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Hassibullah Roshan
October 2013
Kabul, Afghanistan

In both similar and different ways, the concept of social status is addressed in the three following essays: Rana Dasgupta’s “Capital Gains”, Mike Davis’s “Fear and Money in Dubai”, Dubravka Ugresic’s “The Writer in Exile”, and the “Paper Planes” video by M.I.A.   They all put forward the concept as a situation and condition which separates the poor from the rich, immigrants from native citizens, and new status classifications and associations.

The idea of social hierarchy is highlighted as a complementary and interrelated element to brands in Mr. Rana Dasgupta’s essay, ‘Capital Gains’.   Brands are deemed as an integral part of life in Delhi as they play a fundamental role in controlling the relationships between the existing social classes.   This becomes very clear when Mr. Dasgupta writes, “Car brands regulate the relationship between drivers: impatient Mercedes flash Marutis to let them through the throng, and Marutis move aside.   BMW limousines are so well insulated that passengers don’t even hear the incessant horn with which chauffeurs disperse everything in their path.” Additionally, the rich people’s immoderate use of their freedom and monetary power has caused the working class to suffer extensively. While on the other hand, the concept of brands in this essay portrays the fascination of low income people by the rich in spite of the fact that wealthy people are reckoned to be beyond the law. This issue has been well-conveyed in Mr. Dasgupta’s essay as he writes, “Criticism of the rich results in astonishing waves of rebuttal of ordinary people who feel it is an attack on their national pride.” Not to mention that luxurious brands also signify a symbolic meaning of dominance and supremacy between the rich people in Delhi.   Driving world-class automobiles like Aston Martins, Ferraris, BMWs, Mercedes, and being excessively concerned about the brands of things they wear, use, and eat demonstrates their...


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