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1 Beaverton Sociology- American Studies

Class Matters

by

Class Matters Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The acclaimed New York Times series on social class in America--and its implications for the way we live our lives

We Americans have long thought of ourselves as unburdened by class distinctions. We have no hereditary aristocracy or landed gentry, and even the poorest among us feel that they can become rich through education, hard work, or sheer gumption. And yet social class remains a powerful force in American life.

In Class Matters, a team of New York Times reporters explores the ways in which class--defined as a combination of income, education, wealth, and occupation--influences destiny in a society that likes to think of itself as a land of opportunity. We meet individuals in Kentucky and Chicago who have used education to lift themselves out of poverty and others in Virginia and Washington whose lack of education holds them back. We meet an upper-middle-class family in Georgia who moves to a different town every few years, and the newly rich in Nantucket whose mega-mansions have driven out the longstanding residents. And we see how class disparities manifest themselves at the doctor's office and at the marriage altar.

For anyone concerned about the future of the American dream, Class Matters is truly essential reading.

"Class Matters is a beautifully reported, deeply disturbing, portrait of a society bent out of shape by harsh inequalities. Read it and see how you fit into the problem or--better yet--the solution!"

--Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed and Bait and Switch

Review:

"The topography of class in America has shifted over the past twenty years, blurring the lines between upper, middle and lower classes; some have argued that the concept of class is irrelevant in today's society. While the 14 pieces in this volume (all originally printed as part of a New York Times series) shed light on a different aspect of class, they all agree that it remains an important facet of contemporary American culture and draw their strength by examining class less through argument than through storytelling. The reader, by following three heart attack victims through very different recoveries, by witnessing the divergent immigrant experiences of a Greek diner owner and his Mexican line cook, by tracing the life path of an Appalachian foster child turned lawyer and a single welfare mother turned registered nurse, or by seeing the world from the perspective of the wife of a 'relo' (a six-figure executive who relocates every few years to climb the corporate ladder), quickly realizes class is defined by much more than income. The collection has the power of a great documentary film: it captures the lives and ideas of its subjects in lively, articulate prose that, while grounded in statistics and research, remains engaging and readable throughout. The result is neither an attack on the rich nor a lecture to the poor, but a thoughtful consideration of class dynamics. Its empathetic take on this divisive subject and straightforward prose style will make the book of interest to a wide range of readers. Recommended." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

A team of "New York Times" reporters spent more than a year exploring the ways in which class--defined as a combination of income, education, wealth, and occupation--influences destiny in a society that likes to think of itself as a land of unbounded opportunity.

About the Author

The New York Times team comprises Anthony DePalma, Timothy Egan, Geraldine Fabrikant, Laurie Goodstein, David Cay Johnston, Peter T. Kilborn, David D. Kirkpatrick, David Leonhardt, Tamar Lewin, Charles McGrath, Janny Scott, Jennifer Steinhauer, and Isabel Wilkerson. Bill Keller is the executive editor of The New York Times.

Class Matters also includes essays by Christopher Buckley, Diane McWhorter,

Richard Price, David Levering Lewis, and Linda Chavez, about their encounters with class when they were growing up.

Table of Contents

Introduction by Bill Keller

Shadowy Lines That Still Divide by Janny Scott and David Leonhardt

Life at the Top in American Isn't Just Better, It's Longer by Janny Scott

A Marriage of Unequals by Tamar Lewin

Up from the Holler: Living in Two Worlds, at Home in Neither by Tamar Lewin

On a Christian Mission to the Top by Laurie Goodstein and David D. Kirkpatrick

The College Dropout Boom by David Leonhardt

No Degree, and No Way Back to the Middle by Timothy Egan

Fifteen Years on the Bottom Rung by Anthony DePalma

When the Joneses Wear Jeans by Jennifer Steinhauer

The Five-Bedroom, Six Figure Rootless Life by Peter T. Kilborn

Old Nantucket Warily Meets the New by Geraldine Fabrikant

Richest Are Leaving Even the Rich Far Behind by David Cay Johnston

In Fiction, a Long History of Fixation on the Social Gap by Charles McGrath

Angela Whitiker's Climb by Isabel Wilkerson

Encounters with Class

My Nanny Was a Dreadful Snob by Christopher Buckley

Downwardly Mobile in Birmingham by Diane McWhorter

From the Bronx to Cornell by Richard Price

At the Top of the Bottom in the Segregated South by David Levering Lewis

We Were Poor, but I Didn't Know It by Linda Chavez

Product Details

ISBN:
9780805080551
Introduction:
Keller, Bill
Publisher:
Times Books
Introduction by:
Keller, Bill
Introduction:
Keller, Bill
Author:
The New York Times
Author:
Correspondents of the New York Times
Author:
Keller, Bill
Subject:
Social classes
Subject:
Social values
Subject:
Social mobility
Subject:
SOC050000
Subject:
Social values -- United States.
Subject:
Social mobility -- United States.
Subject:
Economic Conditions
Subject:
Modern - 21st Century
Subject:
Featured Titles-History and Social Science
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paperback
Publication Date:
20050931
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16 bandw photos; 10-15 tables and graphs
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
8.23 x 5.51 x 0.77 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » History and Social Science
History and Social Science » American Studies » General
History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » American Studies
History and Social Science » Sociology » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » Social Classes

Class Matters Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.95 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Times Books - English 9780805080551 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The topography of class in America has shifted over the past twenty years, blurring the lines between upper, middle and lower classes; some have argued that the concept of class is irrelevant in today's society. While the 14 pieces in this volume (all originally printed as part of a New York Times series) shed light on a different aspect of class, they all agree that it remains an important facet of contemporary American culture and draw their strength by examining class less through argument than through storytelling. The reader, by following three heart attack victims through very different recoveries, by witnessing the divergent immigrant experiences of a Greek diner owner and his Mexican line cook, by tracing the life path of an Appalachian foster child turned lawyer and a single welfare mother turned registered nurse, or by seeing the world from the perspective of the wife of a 'relo' (a six-figure executive who relocates every few years to climb the corporate ladder), quickly realizes class is defined by much more than income. The collection has the power of a great documentary film: it captures the lives and ideas of its subjects in lively, articulate prose that, while grounded in statistics and research, remains engaging and readable throughout. The result is neither an attack on the rich nor a lecture to the poor, but a thoughtful consideration of class dynamics. Its empathetic take on this divisive subject and straightforward prose style will make the book of interest to a wide range of readers. Recommended." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , A team of "New York Times" reporters spent more than a year exploring the ways in which class--defined as a combination of income, education, wealth, and occupation--influences destiny in a society that likes to think of itself as a land of unbounded opportunity.
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