April 19, 2016
Rick McGinnis on Robert Putnam’s ‘Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis’
Rick McGinnis writes:
Class is an elusive phenomenon – Putnam acknowledges that it doesn’t much care about fashionable metrics like race or gender in enforcing its prerogatives – and for the purposes of his study he divides his classes by levels of education attained: undergraduate or higher for the haves, high school or less for the have-nots. For the present it’s a methodology that works, but a combination of grade inflation and an overreliance on credentials seems to be failing recent college graduates lately, and just as Putnam admits that the real effects of the growing class divide might not have made themselves felt yet, there are other social and cultural factors in play that might escape the parameters of his study.