Social Class on the Titanic

When remembering the sinking of the RMS Titanic, it is important to remember its significance. Occurring in 1912, it represents one of the biggest boat disasters in our history. At the first report of the sinking, the Titanic became instant news and has been the subject of much satisfaction ever since. The grandeur of the ship, the concept that it was “unsinkable”, and the scale of the disaster has truly captured the imagination and hearts of people ever since.
      Yet, the disaster signifies a very real and extreme show of the hierarchy of social classes. The wealthier you were, the higher chance you had at surviving. Although we would like to believe that this is the relic of days gone by, unfortunately, the same is true today: wealth is still the greatest predictor of how important you are to society.
      Many factors contributed to first class passengers having a better chance of getting off the Titanic alive, but by far the greatest was the physical structure of the ship itself. There were 11 decks, eight of which were in use by passengers. The top deck contained all of the ships’ first class amenities, but more importantly, it held all of the lifeboats that would soon be desperately needed. As the deck levels descended, so did the social classes. In fact, most of the third class passengers and crew occupied deck 5 levels lower that the first class passengers. Those who were of a lower class were even prohibited from certain parts of the ship, including the top deck where the lifeboats were. For example, when Jack wished to talk to Rose while she was in church, he was told it was not his place to be there and sent away. It was blatantly obvious that those of lower classes were valued less that the wealthy.
      While it may not be as blatant as sunning oneself on the upper decks, social classes are still of importance to society. In fact, wealth (being an indicator of a high social class) is the strongest predictor of health and life expectancy in the...