Why is it so Hard for a Ivy League Grad to Talk to His Plumber?

I just came across this article about elite education, and the habits of the Ivy Leaguers.  I really like the opening paragraphs which asks why the author, who is an Ivy League grad has so much trouble talking to the plumber who will fix his pipes.

This has a lot to do with what Pierre Bourdieu and the “habitus” of social class.  As the author, William Deresiewicz points out, this is tightly connected to how “intelligent” you are.

The Disadvantages of an Elite Education

Our best universities have forgotten that the reason they exist is to make minds, not careers

By William Deresiewicz

Continued here.


2 thoughts on “Why is it so Hard for a Ivy League Grad to Talk to His Plumber?

  1. you should actually test your theory and see if lower ranked people are capable of being taught to do things the elite do and vice versa. I’d have a guess at who could cross over better!

  2. @dad. Good suggestion. Asking Wall Street Bankers to fix a pipe, pick watermelons in the heat would make a good competition. My favorite was my underpaid mechanic in Tanzania who arrived to work on the transmission in my car on a bicycle. He dropped the transmission in my driveway, found the damaged part, went to town and found the spare, and replaced–all in three days.

Comments are closed.