If you can fill the unforgiving minute With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run, Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it. And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son!
In capitalist countries, the middle class is a basic component of the social structure. Why a component rather than a genuine “class” will soon be shown. Our main question is whether the middle class is to be found in Poland, as well. A handful of reflections to start with. It is September, 2002. Thirteen years ago, when the middle class and the appended themes of unemployment and exchange quotation were addressed in the Polish media and political debates, hardly anyone was likely to believe those notions would ever be pertinent to our realities, not to mention that few actually made any sense of them. The middle class became an issue in the early 1990s, when life in Poland gradually came to resemble that of Western societies in some respects. Survey research of the time revealed that, suddenly, 45% to 50% of all adult Poles started to regard themselves as belonging to the middle class.
Thinking about the processes of the middle class formation in Poland has developed along two distinct lines. On one hand, in the media discourse, insights are produced on the spot as politicians and opinion leaders demand instantaneous diagnoses. On the other, sociologists take their time to reflect and draw on systematic analytical findings...
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