What Signifies Middle Class for African Americans?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

As we continue trying to define what it means to be middle class in America, we turn our focus to the black community. Are the indicators of middle class life for black America different from those for white America?

Kris Marsh, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Maryland, might be considered an expert on the black middle class. She is the co-author of a research project which found, contrary to popular belief, that the black middle class is not declining; it's shifting. Marsh's study found that more African-Americans who consider themselves middle class are single, living alone, own their own home and have good jobs with good incomes. 

William Michael Cunningham also joins the program. Cunningham is the CEO of Creative Investment Research. He says household income is lower for the black middle class than their white counterparts. 


Bill Cunningham and Kris Marsh

Produced by:

Kal Elsebai

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