Friday, November 4, 2011

Classism 400 years later

Classism 400 years later focuses on the notion that Shakespeare, who didn't have the advantages of nobility, couldn't have written his plays. I especially like this general point:
The belief that the achievement gap between rich and poor (where it exists) has to do with inherent differences rather than the socially constructed inequities of opportunity and privilege is alive and well. We are looking for talent at Harvard, where the biggest affirmative action program is legacy admissions (that is, you get into Harvard because your dad went to Harvard), when it is just as likely to be found in places the aristocrats don’t hang out. As Gould wrote elsewhere, “I am somehow less interested in the weight and convolutions of Einstein’s brain than in the near certainty that people of equal talent have lived and died in cotton fields and sweatshops.”