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  1. #1
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    Default Middle Class Self Loathing

    Any good articles/books about this phenomenon?

    It's a feeling I'm intimately acquainted with, and it occurred to me as a point of discussion when reading tributes to K Punk which made reference to his pride in being working class. I feel I naturally, unthinkingly inherited it, without ever really understanding it.

    What is it about the middle class which compels this shame and self loathing? Is it the awareness of being neither one thing nor the other, of having roots in a working class culture, less buttoned down and servile towards the loathed and envied upper class, and of aspiring towards a condition of upper class cultivation, without possessing the proper credentials to get past the doorman?

    And is the concept of 'working class pride' something of a sentimental fantasy (or projection of self loathing) on the part of the middle class?

    Anyway, I'll stop banging on now, because I'm sure others will have much more interesting and informed things to say on the subject. Unless they're middle-class, in which case it'll be pretentious waffle (and they're probably drinking posh coffee, the cunts).
    Last edited by Corpsey; 22-01-2017 at 07:51 PM.

  2. #2
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    Deracinated, inherently conservative buffer class, perpetually afraid of losing what little they have? No culture or traditions only one, or two generations away from their plebby predecessors? Quisling servant class of wealth and privilege? Paid off class traitors?
    Last edited by luka; 20-01-2017 at 09:36 AM.

  3. #3
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    No culture or traditions? What about memes?

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    I fucking love memes.

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  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by luka View Post
    No culture or traditions only one, or two generations away from their plebby predecessors?
    This reminds me (indirectly) of Pip in 'Great Expectations', provided a means of escape from (relative) poverty through patronage and education, but soon rendered a snob, guilty for leaving his loved ones behind and yet loathing their lack of cultivation, etc.

    Dickens' class origins are quite fascinating, really (son of a clerk who ended up in debtor's prison, with Charles forced to work in a factory at the age of 12). You're right to point out the precariousness of the middle-classes.

    A particularly common form of middle-class self-loathing is the '#firstworldproblems' thing. Feeling that any misery or even 'moaning' about the state of the world is self-indulgent and hypocritical. Also 'champagne socialism'.

  7. #6
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    I am middle class and so have a special insight into their ways and values. Obviously there's a few different flavours of middle class. Can't wait for Mr tea to start frothing at the gash once he sees this thread.

  8. #7
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    Haha, I knew luka was gonna say something like that. It's funny how we know each other so well.
    Doin' the Lambeth Warp New: DISSENSUS - THE NOVEL - PM me your email address and I'll add you

  9. #8
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    I've noticed that the older I get the more seduced I am by the middle-class trappings I formerly affected to despise.

    I'm now sinking comfortably into my middle-class status, like an imitation leather armchair from John Lewis.

    Coveting furniture. Enjoying BBC Four documentaries about Rome and Fleetwood Mac. Posh cheese. Wine. Holidays to the South of France. Sounds delightful.

    Wouldn't swap with my plebby forefathers for all the brie in Waitrose.

  10. #9
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    I've not read loads of Mark Fisher's writing like some people here have, but in what I have read, it's notable that never fails to big up his own working-class credentials, and that anything he doesn't like can pretty much automatically be dismissed as 'bourgeois', which is k-punk for 'self-evidently worthless and quite possibly evil'. But - and without wishing to diss the guy - as I understand it, he made a living as a university lecturer, author and occasional opinion journalist, which is not most people's idea of proletarian labour. In fact it's a classically bourgeois occupation. So what exactly was it about him that was 'working class' in any meaningful way? If it's just that he came from a working-class background, I'm afraid I don't really buy that because class is not genetically encoded, is it? My parents are almost stereotypically middle-class but all of their parents were about as working-class as it gets (or got). I don't identify as a miner or a farm labourer just because some of my recent ancestors did those things, that would be ridiculous.

    So I wonder if MCSL played some important part in Mark's psychological makeup.
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  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corpsey View Post

    A particularly common form of middle-class self-loathing is the '#firstworldproblems' thing. Feeling that any misery or even 'moaning' about the state of the world is self-indulgent and hypocritical. Also 'champagne socialism'.
    to me that appears to be more about being a bit of a hypocrite and/or feeling guilty than self-loathing.

    IMO there is middle class self loathing, but in the context of not having met the self-imposed "goals" of reaching "upper" middle class /upper class status.

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