[Marxism] Fwd: The West Virginia teachers strike shows what “working class” means today.

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Tue Mar 6 06:16:10 MST 2018

When pundits and political observers (and the president) talk about 
“working-class” Americans, they have an archetype in mind: the white, 
blue-collar male worker. Journalists who travel to Rust Belt communities 
in states like Pennsylvania and Ohio often take as a given that those 
workers—and laborers like them—are representative of working-class 
Americans. But since the 1970s, working-class labor has shifted from 
“making stuff” to “serving people,” a product of globalization, 
technological change, and a policy regime that prioritized the flow of 
capital above all else. Increasingly, the typical working-class American 
looks more like a fast food worker or paid caregiver—jobs held 
predominantly by white women and people of color—than someone who wears 
a hard hat to the job site. And while most definitions of “working 
class” center on workers without college degrees, there are many 
laborers with college diplomas whose prospects are now similar to those 
without them.


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