The share of Americans who are considered in that group shrank from to , according to a new report from the Pew Research Center that covers this year period. At the beginning of the s, 62 percent of Americans qualified for middle-class status, a share that had dropped to 59 percent two decades later. Even though everyone likes to consider themselves middle class, America has always been a socially and economically stratified society. Recent economic trends are creating even greater divides between the classes, such as the fast income growth among America's top earners.
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Friedrich Engels saw the category as an intermediate social class between the nobility and the peasantry of Europe in late-feudalist society. In France, the middle classes helped drive the French Revolution. Stevenson identified the middle class as that falling between the upper-class and the working-class. The chief defining characteristic of membership in the middle-class is possession of significant human capital. Within capitalism , "middle-class" initially referred to the bourgeoisie ; later, with the further differentiation of classes in the course of development of capitalist societies, the term came to be synonymous with the term petite bourgeoisie.
Nine Out of Ten Americans Consider Themselves Middle Class
Ben Cosgrove Nov 29, If there's one thing we humans like to do, it's label ourselves and one another. Sometimes those labels, applied to vast numbers of people, are obviously laudatory The Greatest Generation. Sometimes they're pitying The Lost Generation. Sometimes they're duly withering The Me Generation. And sometimes, at least in the moment, they're just plain accurate.
By Richard Fry and Rakesh Kochhar About half of American adults lived in middle-income households in , according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data. Our calculator below, updated with data, lets you find out which group you are in — first compared with other adults in your metropolitan area and among American adults overall, and then compared with other adults in the United States similar to you in education, age, race or ethnicity, and marital status. The American middle class is stable in size, but losing ground financially to upper-income families The calculator takes your household income and adjusts it for the size of your household. The income is revised upward for households that are below average in size and downward for those of above average size.