Unequal America: Class Conflict, the News Media, and Ideology in an Era of Record Inequality


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6.0 X 9.0 X 0.67 inches | 0.94 pounds

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About the Author

Anthony R. DiMaggio is Associate Professor of Political Science at Lehigh University and the author of a variety of books on mass media and politics--most recently, Rebellion in America (Routledge, 2020) and Political Power in America (SUNY Press, 2019). He has remained active over the last few decades in social movements and as an avid social commentator in the field of American politics.


Why is there no socialism in the United States? DiMaggio's landmark study, Unequal America, achieves the gold standard of theory and research, answering that question through careful review of survey data, interviews, considerations of American history, news media and recent social movements. His exhaustive analysis shows why Americans generally have little critical understanding of the class system, which is obscured by beliefs that most American are "middle class," that hard work leads to success, and that the poor live well. His analysis is a must read for all scholars, policy makers and activists concerned with understanding inequality and how to change it.

--Lauren Langman, Professor, Department of Sociology, Loyola University--Chicago

Author of God, Guns, Gold, and Glory: American Character and its Discontents

Amid the explosion of books now available on economic inequality, DiMaggio's book is as sobering as it is provocative. Few studies look at how economic inequality shapes consciousness, but this book shows that false consciousness is an essential feature of capitalism and the inequality it breeds. DiMaggio provides us with something other scholars of inequality consistently overlook: that inequality creates its own system of justification, sealing it off from criticism and social change. His book is as rigorous as it is bold, and it is essential reading for anyone studying economic inequality. His political acumen is matched by his social scientific skill, and the result is a major step forward in our understanding of inequality.

--Michael J. Thompson, Professor of Political Science, William Paterson University

Author of The Politics of Inequality: A Political History of the Idea of Economic Inequality in America

From a strong theoretical base and using a mixed-method empirical approach, DiMaggio presents a comprehensive examination of the way Americans think about economic inequality. This volume offers a glimpse into the American mind, fully supported from both novel and previously available data and complete with discussion of the COVID-19 pandemic. Readers will find the results of his interviews compelling, in conjunction with the public opinion data that undergirds their depth and power. DiMaggio neatly weaves discussion of trends in public opinion about inequality with the reasons for it, as he creates an accessible narrative that will inspire readers to grapple with some of the core challenges of our time.

--Stephen Caliendo, Dean of College of Arts and Science, North Central College

Author of Inequality in America: Race, Poverty, and Fulfilling Democracy's Promise