Thursday, February 15, 2018

miscellany from Brooks' Bobos

Brooks alludes to “assortative mating” and the drops in transaction costs that changed the way people met, married and had families (14, 25-29). (This is reminiscent of some of Murray’s work in Coming Apart.)

Brooks doesn’t mention Tom Wolfe, aside from a passing poke at the white vest which was part of his “audiovisual signature.” (173) But I kept thinking of Wolfe’s work on culture over the years—from… and… to…

Brooks makes smart use of “wedding data” from the New York Times (34, 43b) to compare the 1950s, 1960s/1970s, and the 1990s—the sheer number (many, fewer, many) and what we’re told about the bride and groom in the announcements.

Brooks cites Daniel Bell’s influence through his famous 1976 book on capitalism and culture (136-137) and points to Jane Jacobs’ 1961 classic, The Death and Life of Great American Cities as “the most influential book on how Bobos view organizations and social structure.” (123-127, 130)


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