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  • Acknowledgments ix

    Introduction: We Shall Be All: Toward a Transnational History of the Middle Class / A. Ricardo López with Barbara Weinstein 1

    Part I: The Making of the Middle Class and Practices of Modernity 27

    Thinking about Modernity from the Margins: The Making of a Middle Class in Colonial India / Sanjay Joshi 29

    The African Middle Class in Zimbabwe: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives / Michael O. West 45

    Between Modernity and Backwardness: The Case of the English Middle Class / Simon Gunn 58

    "Aren't We All?": Aspiration, Acquisition, and the American Middle Class / Marina Moskowitz 75

    The Gatekeepers: Middle-Class Campaigns of Citizenship in Early Cold War Canada / Franca Iacovetta 87

    Commentary on Part I / Barbara Weinstein 107

    Part II: Labor Professionalization, Class Formation, and State Rule 119

    The Conundrum of the Middle-Class Worker in the Twentieth-Century United States: The Professional Managerial Workers' (Folk) Dance around Class / Daniel J. Walkowitz 121

    Becoming Middle Class: The Local History of a Global Story—Colonial Bombay, 1890–1940 / Prashant Kidambi 141

    Conscripts of Democracy: The Formation of a Professional Middle Class in Bogotá During the 1950s and Early 1960s / A. Ricardo López 161

    The Formation of the Revolutionary Middle Class during the Mexican Revolution / Michael A. Ervin 196

    Commentary on Part II / Mary Kay Vaughan 223

    Part III: Middle-Class Politics in Revolution 233

    A Middle Class Revolution: The APRA Party and Middle-Class Identity in Peru, 1931–1956 / Iñigo García-Bryce 235

    Revolutionary Promises Encounter Urban Realities for Mexico City's Middle Class, 1915–1928 / Susanne Eineigel 253

    Being Middle Class and Being Arab: Sectarian Dilemmas and Middle-Class Modernity in the Arab Middle East, 1908–1936 / Keith David Watenpaugh 267

    Commentary on Part III / Brian Owensby 288

    Part IV: Middle-Class Politics and the Making of the Public Sphere 297

    The City as a Field of Female Civic Action: Women and Middle-Class Formation in Nineteenth-Century Germany / Gisela Mettele 299

    Putting Faith in the Middle Class: the Bourgeoisie, Catholicism, and Postrevolutionary France / Carol E. Harrison 315

    Siúticos, Huachafos, Cursis, Arribistas, and Gente de Medio Pelo: Social Climbers and the Representation of Class in Chile and Peru, 1860–1930 / David S. Parker 335

    "Los Argentinos Descendemos de los Barcos": The Racial Articulation of Middle-Class Identity in Argentina, 1920–1960 / Enrique Garguin 355

    Commentary on Part IV / Robyn Muncy 377

    Afterword / Mrinalini Sinha 385

    Bibliography 395

    Contributors 431

    Index 435
  • A. Ricardo López

    Sanjay Joshi

    Simon Gunn

    Franca Iacovetta

    Marina Moskowitz

    Prashant Kidambi

    Michael A. Ervin

    Mary Kay Vaughan

    Inigo Garcia-Bryce

    Susanne Eineigel

    Daniel Walkowitz

    Brian Owensby

    Gisela Mettele

    Carol E. Harrison

    David S. Parker

    Enrique Garguin

    Robyn Muncy

    Mrinalini Sinha

    Keith David Watenpaugh

    Barbara Weinstein

  • The Making of the Middle Class brings together new work on a subject—the history of the middle class—that has previously seen only fragmented historical discussion.Yet, the volume does more than simply bring the middle classes back into the fold of global history. Rather, by taking a transnational lens, it has spurred an ambitious project to connect the history of the middle classes to broader discussions onglobal cultural identities, the history of globalization, practices of modernity, imperialism, and neoliberalism.”

    “The book is a welcome addition to a historiography that, at least for Latin America, has focused too much on elites and/or subalterns...This book, however, is important in that it allows us to take a fresh look at what the ambivalent and ‘fuzzy’ realities of middle class(es) might mean for the modern age.”

    [T]he volume undoubtedly represents a step forward in the development of a field of middle-class studies. The insights of the introduction, the intelligence of the commentaries and afterword, and the variety of methods at play and of issues dealt with in each individual article will surely make of this book a fundamental read for scholars to come.”

    “[A] carefully crafted anthology…The panorama of the book's examples dazzles the reader's mind.”

    "This book's many contributions are individually brilliant local studies and the act of gathering them and tying them together with post-section commentaries provides a fruitful direction for a truly comparative and transnational narrative."

    "...[T]his collection’s strengths—particularly its fleshing out of the complex points of transnational contact between emergent middle classes—offer a valuable contribution both to historical scholarship and to larger discussions about the possibilities of a global middle class." 

    Reviews

  • The Making of the Middle Class brings together new work on a subject—the history of the middle class—that has previously seen only fragmented historical discussion.Yet, the volume does more than simply bring the middle classes back into the fold of global history. Rather, by taking a transnational lens, it has spurred an ambitious project to connect the history of the middle classes to broader discussions onglobal cultural identities, the history of globalization, practices of modernity, imperialism, and neoliberalism.”

    “The book is a welcome addition to a historiography that, at least for Latin America, has focused too much on elites and/or subalterns...This book, however, is important in that it allows us to take a fresh look at what the ambivalent and ‘fuzzy’ realities of middle class(es) might mean for the modern age.”

    [T]he volume undoubtedly represents a step forward in the development of a field of middle-class studies. The insights of the introduction, the intelligence of the commentaries and afterword, and the variety of methods at play and of issues dealt with in each individual article will surely make of this book a fundamental read for scholars to come.”

    “[A] carefully crafted anthology…The panorama of the book's examples dazzles the reader's mind.”

    "This book's many contributions are individually brilliant local studies and the act of gathering them and tying them together with post-section commentaries provides a fruitful direction for a truly comparative and transnational narrative."

    "...[T]his collection’s strengths—particularly its fleshing out of the complex points of transnational contact between emergent middle classes—offer a valuable contribution both to historical scholarship and to larger discussions about the possibilities of a global middle class." 

  • "The Making of the Middle Class is a first-rate collection of essays by top scholars writing on a topic of enormous interest: the middle class as an evolving conception and historical reality. The contributors focus on locales around the world. While the issues that they raise take locally specific forms, their essays converge around shared central questions, giving this stimulating collection a rare intellectual unity and focus." — Michael Frisch, University at Buffalo, SUNY

    "Both materially grounded and sensitive to notions of subjectivity and discourse, this timely and provocative volume challenges us to historicize the multiple, transnational formations and meanings of the middle class. Modernity itself is thus recast as a set of entangled, locally rooted processes that did not begin in 'the West' and travel elsewhere, but were mutually constituted and reconstituted in a global and colonial context." — Florencia E. Mallon, University of Wisconsin, Madison

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  • Description

    In this important and timely collection of essays, historians reflect on the middle class: what it is, why its struggles figure so prominently in discussions of the current economic crisis, and how it has shaped, and been shaped by, modernity. The contributors focus on specific middle-class formations around the world—in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas—since the mid-nineteenth century. They scrutinize these formations in relation to the practices of modernity, to professionalization, to revolutionary politics, and to the making of a public sphere. Taken together, their essays demonstrate that the historical formation of the middle class has been constituted transnationally through changing, unequal relationships and shifting racial and gender hierarchies, colonial practices, and religious divisions. That history raises questions about taking the robustness of the middle class as the measure of a society's stability and democratic promise. Those questions are among the many stimulated by The Making of the Middle Class, which invites critical conversation about capitalism, imperialism, postcolonialism, modernity, and our neoliberal present.

    Contributors
    . Susanne Eineigel, Michael A.Ervin, Iñigo García-Bryce, Enrique Garguin, Simon Gunn, Carol E. Harrison, Franca Iacovetta, Sanjay Joshi, Prashant Kidambi, A. Ricardo López, Gisela Mettele, Marina Moskowitz, Robyn Muncy, Brian Owensby, David S. Parker, Mrinalini Sinha, Mary Kay Vaughan, Daniel J. Walkowitz, Keith David Watenpaugh, Barbara Weinstein, Michael O. West

    About The Author(s)

    A. Ricardo López is Assistant Professor of History at Western Washington University.

    Barbara Weinstein is the Silver Professor of History at New York University. She is the author of For Social Peace in Brazil: Industrialists and the Remaking of the Working Class in São Paulo, 1920–1964.

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