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Skidmore College

Film Screening: Class Divide

Class Divide (HBO Documentary Films, 2015)

Friday, October 12
8:30—9:45 a.m.

Gannett Auditorium

Class Divide (HBO Documentary Films, 2015)

Friday, October 12
10:30—11:45 a.m.


Film Synopsis: A look at gentrification and growing inequality in a microcosm, Class Divide explores two
distinct worlds that share the same intersection – 10th Avenue and 26th Street in the Chelsea neighborhood
of Manhattan. On one side of the avenue, the Elliott-Chelsea Houses have provided low-income public
housing to residents for decades. Their neighbor across the avenue since 2012 is Avenues: The World School,
a costly private school. What happens when kids from both of these worlds attempt to cross the divide?

In the United States, income inequality, or the gap between the rich and everyone else, has been growing markedly, by every major statistical measure for some 30 years (Edsall). According to Growing Apart: A Political History of American Inequality, “Americans today live in a starkly unequal society. Inequality is greater now than it has been at any time in the last century, and the gaps in wages, income, and wealth are wider here than they are in any other democratic and developed economy” (Gordon).

Furthermore, there is a striking disparity between what Americans think the level of income inequality is in the U.S. and the reality. For example, in 2011, researchers from Harvard Business School and the Department of Psychology at Duke University found that the average American believes that the richest fifth own 59% of the wealth and that the bottom 40% own 9% while the reality was strikingly different. The top 20% of U.S. households owned more than 84% of the wealth, and the bottom 40% combined for a paltry 0.3% (Wolff).

Visit the Class Divide Website