This chapter examines the nature, causes, and consequences of social stratification: structured inequality in the distribution of scarce resources. It focuses on three common formulations of social class: the Marxian definition, the composite approach, and subjective class, recognizing at the start that none of these is accepted by all sociologists. Sociologists have attempted to deal with social class problem by developing a composite approach to defining social class that considers wealth, income, prestige, education, job status, and other factors. The chapter discusses the Max Weber's view, that there are different dimensions of stratification that vary independently from one another. It also focuses on the economic dimension the distribution of income and wealth and a social prestige dimension, sometimes called status. In the United States, income is distributed more unequally than in most other industrialized countries, and the distribution of wealth is even more unequal.