Class Attitudes in America

Spencer Piston ’01, assistant professor of political science at Boston University, published a book that he says “could never have been written had I not attended Grinnell. In particular, I have Katya Gibel Mevorach to thank, along with Eliza Willis and Janet Seiz.” Class Attitudes in America: Sympathy for the Poor, Resentment of the Rich, and Political Implications (Cambridge University Press, 2018) explains a long-standing puzzle in American politics: why so many Americans support downwardly redistributive social welfare programs, when such support seems to fly in the face of standard conceptions of the American public as anti-government, individualistic, and racially prejudiced. The book captures an important and neglected component of citizen attitudes toward a host of major public policies and candidate evaluations.