Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Importance of Class in America.

The website above is an article posted by Tim Egan a New York Times correspondent, in which he talks about America’s new class division – Universities. I found it particularly interesting as it highlighted the importance for an American, to be of a middle/higher class background in order to succeed in life, showing us the importance of class in today’s societies. Egan says in the article that ‘nearly 60% of people who ten years ago chose not to go to university now work as labourers or in the service industry-also known as “would you like fries with that burger”. These figures are an example of the better social status and earnings of those that go to University, which often working class families can not afford. The mocking comment of “Would you like fries with that burger?” is interesting as it shows how the lower class are viewed. To hold a job such as this is menial and beneath them it seems.
The importance of class lines is outlined a lot in the article, particularly when talking about his daughter. He talks about the ways in which he brought up his daughter, believing he did not raise her into thinking success comes by a top class University. Egan says ‘Here, one of the guiding principles is that we left behind, in another time zone, old society pretence about class and privilege’. Yet, a new generation has surfaced in which class matters, and this centers a lot on University as it is something that represents wealth and superiority through further education. Evidence that is shown in the article to support this is ‘The gap – in earnings, social standing, and comfort – between Americans with a university degree and those who never went beyond their senior year of high school has nearly doubled over the last 25 years’. With pressures such as this placed on society the class division is being projected on to the youth, and this in turn widens the gap between the classes of society.

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