Falling from grace: the experience of downward mobility in the American middle class
As a result of shifting economic and social conditions, many Americans are, for the first time, sliding down the mobility ladder, earning less and suffering a severe loss of middle-class status and self-respect. Here is a penetrating look at their lifestyles and feelings.
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The Extent of Downward Mobility
Rejected Managers and the Culture
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adolescents adult air traffic controllers alcoholism alimony altruism Ameri American American dream American middle class anthropologists argue baby boom baby-boom Bill Taylor blue-collar blue-collar workers Bluestone business cycle career categorical fate child support cial civil rights movement club cohort come corporate crusade culture David Patterson deferred gratification deindustrialization Depression didn't Dierdre displaced managers divorce don't downward mobility downwardly mobile families downwardly mobile managers Dust Bowl earnings economic Edward Shils Elizabeth Elizabeth Daily Elizabethport employees Erving Goffman executive experience face factory family's father feel food stamps force foreclosure Fortune magazine Forty Plus Forty Plus Club friends gender roles Glen Elder golden parachutes Greg Duncan groups headhunters Hispanic Horatio Alger household However income Income Quintile individual industry interviews Jersey Joe Malone John Kowalski K-Mart keep up appearances kids Kohen Kula ring labor labor market liminal lives locus of control loss Lynn Helms Macy's managerial Marilyn Harris marriage McElvaine ment meritocratic middle middle managers middle-class mobile families mothers no-fault divorce nomic nuclear family occupational often old firm older organized labor parents PATCO percent plant position postindustrial society poverty line President Reagan problems professional Purple Heart responsibility Robert Bellah sense sewing machine siblings sick role Singer Company Singer workers Skidder social standard of living stigma strike strike action strikers themselves things tion tradition unem unemployed unemployed managers unemployment victims victims blame Wall Street Journal ward mobility white-collar workers women World War II Wright Mills York City Yuppies