KSU Press Legacy Project



Download Full Text (5.7 MB)

Download Front Matter - Incl. Preface, Acknowledgements, and TOC (4.1 MB)

Download Chapter 1 - Greedy Conformists? (178 KB)

Download Chapter 2 - Social Class (210 KB)

Download Chapter 3 - A Way of Life (205 KB)

Download Chapter 4 - Origins (214 KB)

Download Chapter 5 - Industrialization (224 KB)

Download Chapter 6 - The Tipping Point (202 KB)

Download Chapter 7 - The Reaction (221 KB)

Download Chapter 8 - Bobos in Limbo (234 KB)

Download Chapter 9 - Temples of Liberalism (226 KB)

Download Chapter 10 - The Family (208 KB)

Download Chapter 11 - Toward a Professionalized Society (204 KB)

Download Bibliography (173 KB)


Nowadays, liberalism is in crisis. Whereas conservatism suffered a profound meltdown during the Great Depression, today it is liberals who must confront the disconfirmation of many of their cherished beliefs. Sometimes, it seems as if a few are behaving like teenaged rebels, trying to prove that they will not buckle under adult hypocrisies. Yet, despite refusing to conform, they reflexively align themselves with the symbols of their sedition. Festooned with tattoos, body piercings, and spiky green hairdos, they insist they have arrived at these fashions independently. Liberals similarly take positions without acknowledging that these derive from groupthink. Like the journalists described in Myrna Blyth's Spin Sisters, they chatter about political issues as vacuously as if they were sitting in a high school cafeteria. Aware that the unspoken price of communal status is an acceptance of the consensus positions on abortion or affirmative action, they comply. Brent Bozell experienced a similar political conformity when he appeared on a television talk show. After its technicians inadvertently failed to turn off his earpiece, he was treated to the show's directors hooting about his conservative views while he was on the air. Much like a pack of fraternity brothers, these erstwhile professionals reveled in making sophomoric jokes about opinions they did not share. Impartially evaluating opposing views was not part of their intellectual repertoire.



Publication Date



Kennesaw State University Press


Kennesaw, GA


culture war, liberalism, middle-class, sociology, professionalization


Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Psychology and Interaction | Sociology | Work, Economy and Organizations

The Great Middle Class Revolution: Our Long March Toward a Professionalized Society