In this Book

Princeton University Press
summary

America has a long tradition of middle-class radicalism, albeit one that intellectual orthodoxy has tended to obscure. The Radical Middle Class seeks to uncover the democratic, populist, and even anticapitalist legacy of the middle class. By examining in particular the independent small business sector or petite bourgeoisie, using Progressive Era Portland, Oregon, as a case study, Robert Johnston shows that class still matters in America. But it matters only if the politics and culture of the leading player in affairs of class, the middle class, is dramatically reconceived.

This book is a powerful combination of intellectual, business, labor, medical, and, above all, political history. Its author also humanizes the middle class by describing the lives of four small business owners: Harry Lane, Will Daly, William U'Ren, and Lora Little. Lane was Portland's reform mayor before becoming one of only six senators to vote against U.S. entry into World War I. Daly was Oregon's most prominent labor leader and a onetime Socialist. U'Ren was the national architect of the direct democracy movement. Little was a leading antivaccinationist.

The Radical Middle Class further explores the Portland Ku Klux Klan and concludes with a national overview of the American middle class from the Progressive Era to the present. With its engaging narrative, conceptual richness, and daring argumentation, it will be welcomed by all who understand that reexamining the middle class can yield not only better scholarship but firmer grounds for democratic hope.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. restricted access Download |
  1. Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
  2. restricted access Download |
  1. CONTENTS
  2. pp. vii-viii
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. List of Illustrations and Maps
  2. pp. ix-x
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Preface
  2. pp. xi-xvi
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xvii-xxiii
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART I. REHABILITATING THE AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS
  2. pp. 1-2
  1. One • Rethinking the Middle Class: Politics, History, and Theory
  2. pp. 3-17
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Two • Curt Muller and the Capitalist Middle Class: Social Misconstructions of Reality
  2. pp. 18-28
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Three • Harry Lane and the Radicalism of Middle-Class Reform
  2. pp. 29-46
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART II. THE POPULIST POLITICAL ECONOMY OF PROGRESSIVE ERA PORTLAND
  2. pp. 47-50
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Four • The Contours of Class in Portland
  2. pp. 51-73
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Five • Capitalism, Anticapitalism, and the Solidarity of Middle Class and Working Class
  2. pp. 74-89
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Six • Petit Bourgeois Politics in Portland and World History
  2. pp. 90-98
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Seven • Will Daly: The Petit Bourgeois Hero of Labor
  2. pp. 99-114
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART III. “THE MOST COMPLETE DEMOCRACY IN THE WORLD”: THE POPULIST RADICALISM OF DIRECT DEMOCRACY
  2. pp. 115-118
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Eight • Direct Democracy as Antidemocracy? The Evolution of the Oregon System, 1884–1908
  2. pp. 119-126
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Nine • Direct Democracy’s Mechanic: William S. U’Ren
  2. pp. 127-137
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Ten • From the Grand Reorganization to a Syndicalism of Housewives: Feminist Populism and the Other Spirit of ’76
  2. pp. 138-158
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Eleven • The Political Economy of Populist Democracy: The Single Tax Movement in Portland, 1908–1916
  2. pp. 159-176
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART IV. A POPULISM OF THE BODY: THE RATIONALITY AND RADICALISM OF ANTIVACCINATIONISM
  2. pp. 177-178
  1. Twelve • A Deluded Mob of Ignorant Fools? The Historiography of Antivaccination, and the Risks of Vaccination
  2. pp. 179-190
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Thirteen • Shutting Down the Schools: Parents and Protest in Mt. Scott
  2. pp. 191-196
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Fourteen • From the Death of a Child to Sedition against the State: The Life and Ideology of Lora C. Little
  2. pp. 197-206
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Fifteen • Direct Democracy and Antivaccination
  2. pp. 207-217
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Sixteen • The Success and Radicalism of Antivaccination
  2. pp. 218-220
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART V. THE USES OF POPULISM AFTER PROGRESSIVISM: THE 1922 SCHOOL BILL AND THE TRIUMPH OF THE KU KLUX KLAN
  2. pp. 221-222
  1. Seventeen • School Boards and Strikes: Petite Bourgeoisie against Elite
  2. pp. 223-226
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Eighteen • Liberal Populism: The Compulsory Public School Bill
  2. pp. 227-233
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Nineteen • Corporate Tools: The Middling World of the Portland Klan
  2. pp. 234-247
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Twenty • The Producer’s Call and the Portland Housewives’ Council: The Tenuous Survival of Petit Bourgeois Radicalism
  2. pp. 248-254
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. PART VI. CONCLUSION: POPULISM, CAPITALISM, AND THE POLITICS OF THE TWENTIETH-CENTURY AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS
  2. pp. 255-256
  1. Twenty-One • The Lower Middle Class in the American Century
  2. pp. 257-265
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Twenty-Two • The Fate of Populism: Moral Economy and the Resurgence of Middle-Class Politics
  2. pp. 266-278
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Appendix 1. Tables
  2. pp. 279-290
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Appendix 2. Map, Voter Registration Density by Precinct, 1916
  2. pp. 291-292
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Abbreviations
  2. pp. 293-294
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Notes
  2. pp. 295-380
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Index
  2. pp. 381-394
  3. restricted access Download |
  1. Other Works in the Series
  2. pp. 395-396
  3. restricted access Download |
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.