Coming Apart

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2012-01-31
  • Publisher: Crown Forum

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From the bestselling author of Lo sing Groundand The Bell Curve, this startling long-lens view shows how America is coming apart at the seams that historically have joined our classes. In Coming Apart, Charles Murray explores the formation of American classes that are different in kind from anything we have ever known, focusing on whites as a way of driving home the fact that the trends he describes do not break along lines of race or ethnicity. Drawing on five decades of statistics and research, Coming Apartdemonstrates that a new upper class and a new lower class have diverged so far in core behaviors and values that they barely recognize their underlying American kinship-divergence that has nothing to do with income inequality and that has grown during good economic times and bad. The top and bottom of white America increasingly live in different cultures, Murray argues, with the powerful upper class living in enclaves surrounded by their own kind, ignorant about life in mainstream America, and the lower class suffering from erosions of family and community life that strike at the heart of the pursuit of happiness. That divergence puts the success of the American project at risk. The evidence in Coming Apart is about white America. Its message is about all of America.

Table of Contents

Prologue: November 21, 1963p. 1
The Formation of a New Upper Class
Our Kind of Peoplep. 23
The Foundations of the New Upper Classp. 46
A New Kind of Segregationp. 69
How Thick Is Your Bubble?p. 100
The Bright Side of the New Upper Classp. 116
The Formation of a New Lower Class
The Founding Virtuesp. 127
Belmont and Fishtownp. 144
Marriagep. 149
Industriousnessp. 168
Honestyp. 189
Religiosityp. 200
The Real Fishtownp. 209
The Size of the New Lower Classp. 226
Why It Matters
The Selective Collapse of American Communityp. 236
The Founding Virtues and the Stuff of Lifep. 253
One Nation, Divisiblep. 269
Alternative Futuresp. 278
Acknowledgmentsp. 307
Data Sources and Presentationp. 310
Supplemental Material for the Segregation Chapterp. 315
Supplemental Material for the Chapter on Belmont and Fishtownp. 321
Supplemental Material for the Marriage Chapterp. 337
Supplemental Material for the Honesty Chapterp. 342
Supplemental Material for the American Community Chapterp. 353
Supplemental Material for the Chapter About the Founding Virtues and the Stuff of Lifep. 356
Notesp. 358
Bibliographyp. 389
Indexp. 399
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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