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ERIC Number: ED160510
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Pages: 63
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Class Consciousness in Contemporary America: What Is It? Who Has It? What Difference Does It Make?
Schlozman, Kay Lehman
This study used survey data to investigate the level of class consciousness among working class Americans. On a multi-dimensional measure, workers were considered to be class conscious if they identified personally with the working class, felt workers were denied a fair share of society's rewards, considered the interests of workers and management to be at odds, and thought workers should stick together. Questionnaire data were gathered from 1365 workers living in 60 major urban areas. The results demonstrate that in contemporary America class consciousness is not fostered by factory settings which bring large numbers of workers together. This contradicts traditional Marxian theory. Two hypotheses commonly used to explain the low level of class consciousness in America were confirmed. One is that the belief in the individualistic notions which comprise the American dream of success dampens class consciousness. The second is that the general affluence of American society blurs class distinctions. The study also shows that a higher level of worker class consciousness would make little difference to contemporary politics. At the present time class conscious workers are not more politically active than their less conscious counterparts. Numerous graphs and charts are used. (Author/BC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association (New York, New York, August 31-September 3, 1978)