Class Identity Starting to Turn in the US?

For years, one of the curiosities of ideology and political identity in the US has been the tendency of nearly everyone – from homeless people to corporate CEOs – to identify themselves as “middle class.” But according to the latest General Social Survey (a long-running social science survey research project), that deeply rooted middle class identity may finally be disintegrating. Last year, a record 8.4% of Americans identified themselves as “lower class” – the highest number in the four-decade long history of the GSS.

US workers have been under assault since the early 1980s: deunionization, loss of health and retirement benefits, vanishing job security. Are objective economic conditions finally having an effect on consciousness?

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