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[Xmca-l] Re: NYT Op-Ed: Class Prejudice Resurgent

That quote was from the Brooks piece that Annalisa had mentioned.


My sense was that what Brooks was talking about was cross-class
friendships. I kinda doubt that there is much of that here on XMCA.
Friends, surely. But cross-class, maybe less so.

If you look at cities across the U.S. across time, you'll find an
increasing polarization of neighborhood by class. These are seen in our
common sense notions of "the rich part of town" and the "poor parts of
town" (yes, there are always more of the latter than the former!). Many
different structural forces are aligned to make these even worse (e.g., the
way schools are funded). With that in mind, I think Brooks' idea of
friendship across class lines is a lovely one. But my question is: what can
we do to make these kinds of arrangements happen?

And, more cynically, can these arrangements amount to anything more than a
Sisyphean hill of beans (there's an evocative string of words!) if the
structural basis of class-based segregation is not addressed?

And speaking of the 30's, Myles Horton's Highlander School seems exemplary
to all that we are discussing here. Certainly more than a hill of beans
that was made by that radical hillbilly...


On Mon, Dec 8, 2014 at 10:54 PM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu> wrote:

> Hi Greg!
> WRT to your favorite line: I am waiting for the ATers to pick up and run
> with that!  :)
> Maybe we are building friendships here by interacting on this list? Now !
> :)
> But then, even though we are "speaking" we are not talking about "our
> friendship," but then maybe we are. I'm not sure. Perhaps I disagree here
> with Brooks. Perhaps reminding ourselves of the meaning of friendship (our
> friendship) can be a method for disentanglement. It is just a thought.
> It is certainly not easy to have meta-conversations. But this might be a
> way to catch the moments of inflammation and to untangle V's word-meanings
> and even perezhivanie. I don't think it's just about the language of
> poverties, but also the language of wealths, and then discovering, or
> rather uncovering, what is there and how these relate, if they do at all.
> But Greg, perhaps my last post was my best pitch on "the how" as a first
> step. I'm just thinking out loud here.
> As I consider it, the first step also seems to be understanding (and
> agreement) that there is a problem. Am I wrong?
> Kind regards,
> Annalisa
> ________________________________________
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu <xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>
> on behalf of Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com>
> Sent: Monday, December 8, 2014 10:23 PM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: NYT Op-Ed: Class Prejudice Resurgent
> Annalisa,
> My favorite line was:
> "In a friendship, people don’t sit around talking about their friendship.
> They do things together. Through common endeavor people overcome difference
> to become friends."
> But how to build friendships across the grand canyon known as (or, perhaps,
> not known as) social class in the U.S.?
> -greg

Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602