Title:
Is America Fragmenting
Authors:
Mattson, Greggor ( 0000-0001-8872-9637 ) ; Fischer, Claude
Abstract:
The view that America is fragmenting is popular among both pundits and academics and may well be endemic to American culture. We review claims that between 1970 and 2005 American society fragmented along lines of cultural politics, social class, immigration, race, or lifestyle. Taking the twentieth century as historical context, we weigh evidence for both main variants of the fragmentation thesis that there is an increasing divide between two Americas, or that America is fragmenting into a variety of little worlds that touch but do not interpenetrate. We find a well-documented, widening gap in social class, whether measured by education or income. We also find that political elites and activists are demonstrably more polarized in 2005 than they were in 1970; this gap's effect on the electorate is debatable, however. Caveats aside, there is little evidence for increasing fragmentation of America along lines of race, ethnicity, or immigration status. American cultural tastes increasingly cluster into distinct lifeways, but there is little evidence about what effects, if any, this development has. The loudest claims of fragmentation, those concerning value issues, are based on the most contested evidence, but the widening gap between Americans by income and education which receives less popular attention is substantial and serious.
Citation:
Mattson, Greggor, and Claude Fischer. 2009. "Is America Fragmenting." Annual Review Of Sociology 35(1).
Publisher:
Annual Reviews
DATE ISSUED:
2009
Department:
Sociology
Type:
article
PUBLISHED VERSION:
10.1146/annurev-soc-070308-115909
PERMANENT LINK:
http://hdl.handle.net/11282/310620

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorMattson, Greggoren_US
dc.contributor.authorFischer, Claudeen_US
dc.date.accessioned2013-12-23T16:36:56Zen
dc.date.available2013-12-23T16:36:56Zen
dc.date.issued2009en
dc.identifier.citationMattson, Greggor, and Claude Fischer. 2009. "Is America Fragmenting." Annual Review Of Sociology 35(1).en_US
dc.identifier.issn0360-0572en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11282/310620en
dc.description.abstractThe view that America is fragmenting is popular among both pundits and academics and may well be endemic to American culture. We review claims that between 1970 and 2005 American society fragmented along lines of cultural politics, social class, immigration, race, or lifestyle. Taking the twentieth century as historical context, we weigh evidence for both main variants of the fragmentation thesis that there is an increasing divide between two Americas, or that America is fragmenting into a variety of little worlds that touch but do not interpenetrate. We find a well-documented, widening gap in social class, whether measured by education or income. We also find that political elites and activists are demonstrably more polarized in 2005 than they were in 1970; this gap's effect on the electorate is debatable, however. Caveats aside, there is little evidence for increasing fragmentation of America along lines of race, ethnicity, or immigration status. American cultural tastes increasingly cluster into distinct lifeways, but there is little evidence about what effects, if any, this development has. The loudest claims of fragmentation, those concerning value issues, are based on the most contested evidence, but the widening gap between Americans by income and education which receives less popular attention is substantial and serious.en_US
dc.publisherAnnual Reviewsen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1146/annurev-soc-070308-115909en
dc.subject.departmentSociologyen_US
dc.titleIs America Fragmentingen_US
dc.typearticleen_US
dc.identifier.journalAnnual Review Of Sociologyen_US
dc.identifier.volume35en_US
dc.identifier.issue1en_US
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