The Other Middle Class
Foroohar, Rana, Margolis, Mac, Newsweek
Byline: Rana Foroohar and Mac Margolis
The world's burgeoning bourgeoisie may be a market for our goods--but don't expect them to buy into our values.
Middle classes have always been the bulwark of society. Aristotle believed they are democracy's secret weapon--the defenders of social values, ramparts of reason over fiat, and believers in a society run by laws instead of by strongmen. They have also been the engines of economic growth, setting the stage centuries ago for the expansion of capitalism and global trade, and continuing to snap up every new gadget or service in sight. So, it's no wonder that as Western middle classes have become indebted and insecure, economists are pinning their hopes for global prosperity on the new emerging-market middle class, a group of go-getters who, it's hoped, will make the world richer and more stable.
Those two goals, however, may be at odds. As an economic force, this new population is indeed growing even faster than expected. Every year, an astonishing 70amillion people are joining the middle class. (In emerging markets, this is defined by Goldman Sachs as people with yearly incomes between $6,000 …
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Publication information: Article title: The Other Middle Class. Contributors: Foroohar, Rana - Author, Margolis, Mac - Author. Magazine title: Newsweek. Volume: 155. Issue: 11 Publication date: March 15, 2010. Page number: 42. © 2009 Newsweek, Inc. All rights reserved. Any reuse, distribution or alteration without express written permission of Newsweek is prohibited. For permission: www.newsweek.com. COPYRIGHT 2010 Gale Group.
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