The World in Time

Steve Fraser

Friday, June 15, 2018

The Puritan (detail), by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, c. 1883. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bequest of Jacob Ruppert, 1939.

One of America’s most enduring myths involves the fledging country’s supposed fortitude in refusing to import the class structures of its forebears. But, historian Steve Fraser says in the latest episode of The World in Time, “right now, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to sustain that delusion.” Or, as he puts it at the beginning of his book Class Matters: The Strange Career of an American Delusion, “Class is the secret of the American experience, its past, present, and likely future. It is a secret known to all, but a source of public embarrassment to acknowledge. It lives on all the surfaces of daily life, yet is driven underground every time its naked self offends cherished illusions about how we deal with each other.”

 

Lewis H. Lapham talks with Steve Fraser, author of Class Matters: The Strange Career of an American Delusion.

 

Thanks to our generous donors. Lead support for this podcast has been provided by Elizabeth “Lisette” Prince. Additional support was provided by James J. “Jimmy” Coleman Jr.

Discussed in this episode

More Podcasts

Ancient Rome

November 24, 2017

The World in Time:

Adrian Goldsworthy

Lewis H. Lapham talks with Adrian Goldsworthy, author of Pax Romana: War, Peace, and Conquest in the Roman World. More

Slumbering Fog

December 08, 2017

The World in Time:

Gordon S. Wood

Lewis H. Lapham talks with Gordon S. Wood, author of Friends Divided: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. More

Night Scene on the Volga, Alexei Kondratievich Savrasov. The Met.

February 02, 2018

The World in Time:

Victor Sebestyen

Lewis H. Lapham talks with Victor Sebestyen, author of Lenin: The Man, the Dictator, and the Master of Terror. More

July 07, 2017

The World in Time:

Erica Benner

Lewis H. Lapham talks to Erica Benner, author of Be Like the Fox: Machiavelli in His World. More

September 15, 2011

The World in Time:

Green Mountain Boy

Willard Sterne Randall and Lewis Lapham talk about the life and adventures of Ethan Allen.  More

June 15, 2011

The World in Time:

To End All Wars

Lewis Lapham talks with author Adam Hochschild about the struggles of the antiwar movement in World War I–era Britain. More