Rules against inter-class marriage. Some disapproval or penalty is attached to nearly all inter-class marriage. 4 Nobilities are always set apart by rules against marriage with commoners. Roman plebeians and patricians could not inter-marry until the year 445 B.C. And among the Teutons or primitive times any free man who married a slave became one himself. 5 This same sentiment echoed nineteen centuries later in the scandal of von Blomberg, the German general who married the daughter of a smith.Next Page
Modern cases of inter-class marriage, largely of men to inferior women, have a different effect upon the upper classes than upon the lower. A high percentage of upper class women remain unmarried. This, however, does not signify any important shift in the social class structure, because the proportion of lower class women who thus escape their normal fate and rise appreciably is relatively small in comparison to their total number. The spirit and habit of healthy family life is to seek to perpetuate class differences by excluding persons of lower class from marriage into families of higher standing. No reputable sociologist would advocate a theory of marriage based on the opposite principle.
Class endogamy, or a tendency thereunto, is a powerful freezing agent in social class matters.
Protection. In the centuries of Imperial disintegration, provincial Roman senators pursued a policy of engrossment, under the promise of protection, which was carried on till the establishment of the duchies of feudal Europe. Also among the Aztecs "the plebeians were content to work without pay for the nobles, if they could insure their protection by so doing." 6
Modern experiences with protective associations, although not yet influential in affecting the social class hierarchy, lead one to the conclusion, as does the reading of instances of protection during other eras, that much of the real danger from which the inferiors are fleeing often emanates from the protector himself.
When farmers today lose their farms but are permitted to remain on them as tenants, a stiffening of the social class hierarchy tends to take place. Moreover, the system of furnishing tools and fertilizer, wherever in use, is also likened to the protective process of other centuries in that it creates the same spirit of class dependence.
Racketeers in the ranks of labor and elsewhere, who promise protection in the pristine form, may not long be tolerated in American life, but who would venture the same prediction for governmental agents that may take their place?
The story of protection as a solidifier of social status in Europe is written deeply in the period from 100 BC. to 1200 AD., and there is much likelihood that it will be a part of the history of the coming century. Brutality creates or cultivates the desire for protective super-ordination.
Monopoly of religion. Many writers are of the opinion that the first distinct separation of function, prestige, and power was the establishment of the priesthood and class monopoly of religious functions. 7 Frazer, Spencer, and Lippert have all shown instances of kings who were also priests -- throughout Polynesia, and many parts of Africa, in the Americas, and in ancient Greece and Rome. 8
4. Gunnar Landtman, The Origin of the Inequality of the Social Classes (Chicago, 1938) p. 294.
5. Edward Westermarck, Origin and Development of Moral Ideas, vol. II (London, 1917) pp. 379 - 380.
6. Hubert Howe Bancroft, The Works of, vol. II (San Francisco, 1886) p. 217.
7. Russell A. Dixon and E. Kingman Eberhart, Economics and Cultural Change (New York, 1938) p. 70. Also: Raker Brownell, editor, Man and His World, vol. IV (New York, 1929) pp. 98 - 99.
8. Landtman, op. cit., p. 135.