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Andy Walker

Is there an underclass

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I can understand that. The Punk look grew out of a necessity to make do with second hand clothing and a cheap communal lifestyle. There's a big difference between real Punk and bling punk. Punk takes on a politicisation, whereas the other turns it into a fashion statement, like the torn knee jeans for example.

It's like every expression of the underclass is at some point moneyfied. Jeans themselves are from the practical hemp canvas from ships turned into workers clothing and gaining its appeal from its utility, then quick wearing cotton turned it into a fad, like the bell bottom which again had pure long wear and utility for sailors so they can quickly roll up their pants adopted as a readily available cheap pant choice again taken over by fad and becoming ridiculous. Then the army pants. They were the best hardwearing utility wear as choice by the less monied then comes the inevitable fadding again. So, of course there is a division, but it's a division of degrees of politicisation, which necessarily involves the poor, but as many better off intellectuals like Germain Greer for example and others, it's really the intellect and how it is nurtured and nourished and its innate qualities that really delineates. (imo)

Edited by John Dolva

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There is a long and distinguished history of hatred of the poor in the UK. The sociological debate about 'the underclass' seems firmly rooted in this tradition. The poor are seen to be 'scroungers, benefit cheats, feckless criminals' who choose to be poor over hard work and are underserving of aid. This deplorable attitude has informed and shaped a great deal of UK social policy since Thatcher onwards. Under New Labour the gap between rich and poor has widened yet further, benefits have been squeezed, opportunities further limited and upward social mobility has ground to a halt. The poor get pilloried and abused through the right wing media as both the cause of their own and other societal problems.

What I found really interesting in our classroom debate was the extent to which personal circumstances shaped both the attitudes but also the research students had undertaken.

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http://www.amazon.ca/Status-Syndrome-Stand...y/dp/0805078541

With 30 years of research and a ...........

That's lovely Peter, and for once relevant, but what do YOU think about social stratification in western industrial society, the demonisation of the underclass in the media, the lack social mobility, the effect these factors have on democracy etc. etc? or let's here YOUR experience.... links are nice and sometimes useful but are not the same as discussion.

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I'd like to read your opinions about the results, with illustrations, and what factors you used in a determination. This is fascinating stuff, imo, Andy.

edit add: I'd like to add a comment about Kennedy here. One, to me, of his appeal is when he said something about all the disadvantaged Einsteins the world is full of but who through circumstance can never fulfill their potential. There are exceptions, and to some extent their success is determined by their world view, Eva Peron comes to mind as well as the french graffiti spontaneous public artist who was killed when he dled when he doodled on a piece of fence one night in new york by a couple of guys intent on stealing this piece. He came from a very disadvantaged background and I don't think he knew how to deal with fame. A rather tragic figure, which is often the lot with a divergence from the norm.

Edited by John Dolva

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Andy, I'd like to read your opinions about the results after further contemplation. I don' think it can ever be conclusive but evolves continually, and marks contribution to the field, but as of now, can you say what your analyses are, please?

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Andy, will you at some time comment on this? I'm acutally most interested in your perspective on all things. If you let me know you are not going to comment I can then continue, but possibly with a divergence.

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nav_m.gifIs there an underclass?

yes

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''nice''

absolutely

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nav_m.gifIs there an underclass?

yes

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