I’m so excited to talk to you about social class and education.
Jordan Bray
61

It is a great topic, yes! One I have always been interested in, partly because of growing up with culturally working class parents but in a middle-class community. I always noticed the disconnect, but could never really name it until I got older.

I know that that feeling you describe of “talking to house plants.” Part of me feels disloyal even typing that, though. Like my loyalty should be with my working-class roots, not to the “book-learning” viewpoints I have developed over the years.

In other words, I still have a lot of internal cognitive dissonance. I often intentionally dumb down my speech and downplay my knowledge about certain subjects. Not just around my family, but also in general, because I do not want to seem like a “know it all” to anyone, really. I just assume I will be viewed in a negative light by most people if I let my education show too much.

But also there is still a part of me that truly does not value my own time spent learning and researching etc. There is a part of me that really thinks I might “think too much of myself,” and thus I need to guard against that. Stay humble at all costs.

Anyway, yes – I can indeed relate to a lot of what you have written, and the frustrations of people close to you dismissing your knowledge and expertise, to their peril. It can be very upsetting.

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