Bobos In Paradise: The New Upper Class and How They Got There

Simon and Schuster

David Brooks

Central Theme
Morph bohemians and bourgeois and what do you get? Bobos: a schizophrenic generation if there ever was one.

A witty, insightful romp through a confusing and confused generation. Brooks argues that a segment 60’s spirited bohemians have been morphed into the bourgeoisie’s capitalists of the 90’s with a horrifying result the Bobo. They are the new, well-educated, wealthy, influential elite. As evidence Brooks cites waspy suburbs with artsy coffeehouses. Restoration hardware is the perfect consumerist packaging of the past with all its manufactured nostalgia combined with the efficiency of free market capitalism. Only Bobos could conceive of Gandhi in a Gap commercial! This is a generation that has finally rationalized away the anxieties of abundance.

Beliefs num
–Boboism is the result of a liberal ideology, which allowed the lower economic classes into elite educational institutions.
–Access of the non-elite to the levers of power, wealth and influence created a ¢â‚¬Ëœthird stream’ combining bohemianism with the bourgeoisie –Boboism has affected every area of life business, education, and intellectual life even spiritual life.
–Boboism is an amazing blend of self-absorption while appearing to be about others.
–Boboism gives the appearance of a carefree life, but is in fact calculating, efficient and driven to productivity.

Questions Worth Discussing num
–Does the Bobo concept accurately describe the sociological phenomena of today’s generation?
–Can the two polar opposites of bohemianism and bourgeous be merged?

Provocative Quotes byline
–I look at my watch and realize I had better start feeling a serene oneness with God’s creation pretty soon. I’ve got dinner reservations back in Missoula at six.
==Brooks on spiritual seeking of Bobos
–Today the culture war is over, at least in the realm of the affluent. The centuries-old conflict has been reconciled.
==Staying power of Bobos.
–These Bobos define our age. They are the new establishment. Their hybrid culture is the atmosphere we all breathe. Their status codes now govern social life.
==Power of Bobos.
–Dumb good-looking people with great parents have been displaced by smart, ambitious, educated, and antiestablishment people with scuffed shoes.
==Unintended consequence of elite allowing non-elite into elite universities.
–How could there be a last judgment for Bobos? It’s so either/or. Maybe there will just be a last discussion or something like that. I’m trying to imagine the Bobo angel of death. He’s got a tweed jacket instead of a black robe. And instead of a scythe he’s got a trowel from Smith & Hawken, a gardening trowel. And he says, “You’re dead. But you know, you’re not going to go to heaven because that’s too lofty. But you’re not going to go to hell because you’re not a bad person. You’re just going to get to stay in your massive, oversized kitchen with your California casual chairs and your latte, and I’m just going to take your Range Rover and go off.
==Last judgment for Bobos? from the Dick Staub interview.
–You’ve seen them: They sip double-tall, nonfat lattes, chat on cell phones, and listen to NPR while driving their immaculate SUVs to Pottery Barn to shop for $48 titanium spatulas. They tread down specialty cheese aisles in top-of-the-line hiking boots and think nothing of laying down $5 for an olive-wheatgrass muffin. They’re the bourgeois bohemians–“Bobos”–an unlikely blend of mainstream culture and 1960s-era counterculture that, according to David Brooks, represents both America’s present and future.
==Amazon reviewer Shawn Carkonen.

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