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Ascribing class & being different to family

(79 Posts)
FairytalesAreBullshit Mon 27-Mar-17 22:01:29

This is a weird one I know.

I'm nothing like any other member of my family, not only health wise, but eye/hair colour, interests, academic ability, how I see the world. I joke about being swapped at birth, some poor family are in turmoil as they have a child that would fit in my family perfect grin

I was academic, I love things none of them have interests in like cultural stuff, the arts, classical music.

I'm also the only one who got a fairly decent job. I've said elsewhere, they're miffed I had to pack it in as I was ill.

I was wondering if you believe in class, some say and believe it's a social construct, those people have totally valid arguments.

I wondered is class something you can achieve with hard work and status, or something that is ascribed from birth?

I know I'm quite creative, so I often ponder life as an upper class person. Not the celeb crap like MIC, but old style life where you'd live in a big house, have a library that you could die for. No pressures to work, although if I could I'd jump at the chance, but it's the same with reading and pursuing interests, I can't even do that. There's one activity that suits someone supine, it's not my cup of tea at all.

I know some dream about Downton Abbey etc, I love history anyway. I'd like it all apart from servants, if I was ever in such a situation I'd be all bigger social protocols, I see you as my equal not my slave.

I wondered what class you think you are? Also are there any benefits apart from social ones in being from a different class?

Do you think interests help define things, or is it your career, family you were born into.

Dreamily I used to joke when I was a little child and a bit obnoxious at times, I used to scream I'm adopted.

The more I think about it, the more I think class isn't that important, I can't see the benefits, unless you had an amazing social life. Even those from poor / working class backgrounds can have different interests. It doesn't mean you have to fit a stereotype.

JonesyAndTheSalad Tue 28-Mar-17 07:01:57

In the Uk class is inescapable. I'm working class but as a practising artist, I have gained "access" into places and into the company of people who wouldn't usually have anything to do with me.

Not that I wanted this particularly.

But that's how it is. The old landed gentry thing is still in existance in a way but they've adapted to a modern world.

If you don't have the right school on your record and you can't speak as they do, then you're not part of their class.

It's a given that artists and performers are the only people who are entertained by the royal family in a social fashion if they're not of the same ilk socially.

Knifegrinder Tue 28-Mar-17 07:21:04

You're being heavily ironic, right? Or are you really suggesting you come from a different social class to your family because you're 'creative', or that there's some relationship between social class and creativity?

frenchcheeses Tue 28-Mar-17 07:22:18

You sound unhinged.

palebluesky Tue 28-Mar-17 07:25:21

You don't have to fit a stereotype.

But the reason stereotypes exist in the first place is because they crop up so frequently.

Mind you, it is also regional. I think working class in London and working class in Wales still look very different.

Believeitornot Tue 28-Mar-17 07:25:51

You sound a little bit snobby.

You think you're of a higher social status because you like history and are creative? hmm

There is an underlying implication that you think you're more intelligent therefore you're of a higher social class.

That sort of thinking underpins negative feelings towards those on welfare.

There are plenty of stupid people who are of a higher social class and plenty of clever people who are of a lower class.

For someone who claims to be academic, I'm not sure you are.

Railgunner1 Tue 28-Mar-17 07:27:33

You must be trans-financial grin

skerrywind Tue 28-Mar-17 07:33:57

Is this a serious post?

StillDrivingMeBonkers Tue 28-Mar-17 07:34:15

"Class" is a quintessentially British thing. We can look at each other, we don't even have to open our mouths, it doesn't matter how you dress we just know what class and social strata you come from. People think because they went to uni and landed a good salaried job they have somehow moved up a class. They haven't. You can never get rid of your class, you can only buy it for your children and subsequent generations through better educational establishments and social mix.

It is the way you knot your tie, the way you hold your hand bag, the colour of your shoes, simple language used (pardon/sorry/what!) that denotes your class. Everyone of us knows these rules but we wouldn't ever be able to explain them to outsiders because of the subtle nuances.

amboinsainbos Tue 28-Mar-17 07:35:41

You think you are MC because you like classical music and art?

I know some dream about Downton Abbey etc, I love history anyway. I'd like it all apart from servants, if I was ever in such a situation I'd be all bigger social protocols, I see you as my equal not my slave.

^I'm loving this OP. Please tell us more.

Jooni Tue 28-Mar-17 07:36:03

Have a gluten-free artisan biscuit

opheliaamongthelillies Tue 28-Mar-17 07:40:49

....Like all those poor, working class Irish writers who were creative, philosophical and academic- is that what you mean?

annandale Tue 28-Mar-17 07:40:52

I feel like class is a prison on my mind. I know what class I think I am, and unfortunately I feel like I know what class other people are. Yes it's a social construct. Yes it's entirely negative, I can't think of a single positive thing about the British class system. It's got absolutely nothing to do with Downton Abbey but YANBU to dream about living that life as that's the reason ITV broadcast the series and make squillions from it.

amboinsainbos Tue 28-Mar-17 07:41:50

Still what colour of shoes would indicate that one is MC/WC/landed gentry?

Railgunner1 Tue 28-Mar-17 07:42:49

Pink wellies with yellow dots

Chippednailvarnishing Tue 28-Mar-17 07:46:50

So your family are primark and you're fake Boden?

Reow Tue 28-Mar-17 07:47:27


MackerelOfFact Tue 28-Mar-17 07:47:51

Step away from the smelling salts, OP.

glitterglitters Tue 28-Mar-17 07:48:07

My dad was born in a 2 up, 2 down to a coal mining/domestic service family in the 40s.

His mum ran off and left him with his dad, and there were about 8 of them living in this house. No toilet except a shared one with a street.

Managed to get a commission to the RAF (by accident but that's another story) and ended up working as a top ranking specialist in his field for the UN. Lived the world over. Kids went to boarding school. One child married a high ranking officer in the forces. One child runs own multi million pound business grown from scratch.

Df is also from a very particular region with a specific accent. Doesn't speak that way at all.

So yes. Totally possible. However he is still very proud (as am I) of where he came from and spend a lot of time with family up there who live very different lives.

glitterglitters Tue 28-Mar-17 07:49:16

Dh laughs at me that I married "down" when I met him but I don't see it that way at all 😁

CaoNiMartacus Tue 28-Mar-17 07:54:00

"if I was ever in such a situation I'd be all bigger social protocols, I see you as my equal not my slave."

This sentence alone blows your theory out of the water. The upper classes didn't become the upper classes by respecting other people... They accrued wealth through subjugation and enslavement.

FinallyHere Tue 28-Mar-17 07:57:21

dream about Downton Abbey etc, I love history anyway. I'd like it all apart from servants, if I was ever in such a situation I'd be all bigger social protocols, I see you as my equal not my slave.

Good luck with having your bedroom curtains opened at a civilised time in the morning by someone who sleeps in an unheated attic, who has been up before day break, lighting fires and carrying hot water upstairs from the basement for you to wash in

... and then convincing them that they are your equal and not your slave.

ems137 Tue 28-Mar-17 08:01:47

I kinda see what you're getting at OP because my brother is similar to you. We are from a working class family and there was 5 of us siblings.

He was always a bit "different" to us and didn't socialise with the rest of the family, and still doesn't. He went off to Cambridge uni and that gap between us got larger, he sees us as beneath him and I'm pretty sure he's especially embarrassed of me! He doesn't actually know my situation but just assumes and judges anyway.

I think he's a stuck up prick, he thinks I'm like something off those benefits programmes (I'm not). I'm not invited to his very posh wedding because I clearly don't fit in with his fiancées posh family.

I think social class is irrelevant, how you treat people makes you a better person and not the opportunities you are afforded from being rich. People can have all the wealth and social status in the world and they can still be wankers

AllPizzasGreatAndSmall Tue 28-Mar-17 08:04:04

Yes of course you can be born a different class to the rest of your family, because everyone knows it's genetic. hmm

TakeThatFuckingDressOffNow Tue 28-Mar-17 08:06:35

Is this for real????

The class system is some strange British poison. Elitism / classism or whatever you want to call it still dictates how our government and industry is run. It's got bugger all to do with having a big house and a library. It's about one group of people taking all the resources in society and perpetuating myths in order to control the masses and keep the advantage.

Also you sound like you want to assert yourself as better than your own flesh and blood????

Please go to the library and start reading up on class - I would suggest:
Social Class in the 21st Century (Pelican Introduction) by Mike Savage

Or Chavs by Owen Jones (I know, I know not everyone gets on with him)

Ps. Bugger off daily mail / journo's hijacking this thread!!!

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