Why won’t TV show people who aren’t rich?

She’s right that it’s a missed opportunity: A year after Trump’s election, elites are still struggling to understand the class tensions and coastal-vs.-heartland dynamics that shook up the political landscape. By the numbers, the American imbalance is stark: According to the Economic Policy Institute, the hourly wages of high-wage workers rose 41 percent in the 34-year period between 1979 and 2013; the hourly wages of middle-wage workers grew 6 percent in that time frame, and the wages of low-wage workers fell 5 percent. J.D. Vance’s’s career-making 2016 book, “Hillbilly Elegy,” explores the cultural and social consequences of that stagnation and decline, and spends a good amount of time exploring sociological research. Perhaps the coastal, Ivy League set wouldn’t need these kinds of families explained to them through an academic lens if our culture were more interested in their stories.

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