chapter  VI
22 Pages

The Social Movements

One feature of this popular criticism which deserves attention is that it is addressed largely to the new middle classes, who are also presumably its most devoted readers. Its style is satirical. It holds up to the middle classes a slightly distorting mirror in which their virtues as well as their vices take on a ridiculous aspect. It is successful, as other forms of satire have been in the past decade, because it responds to an existing uneasiness about whether prosperity and an assured place on the social escalator do in fact amount to a good life. The same malaise which Wright Mills sketched in White Collar is reflected in this criticism.