Sociology Index

Working Class Culture

Working class culture is cultures created by working class people. Working class culture is contrasted with high culture and folk culture. Working class culture developed during the Industrial Revolution. As most of the newly created working class were former peasants, the cultures took on much of the localised folk culture. Working class culture is sometimes equated with popular culture and lower class culture. Working class culture is also geographically diverse. Working-Class in Marxian sense refers to those who work for a living, employed for wages, especially in manual or industrial work; the proletariat.

Many socialists with a class struggle viewpoint see its importance as arising from the proletariat they champion. Lenin believed that there could be no authentic proletarian culture free from capitalism, and that high culture should not be outside the experience of workers. Working class culture has been portrayed on TV shows such as Roseanne and The Simpsons, and in the United States, working-class culture is often associated with Southern culture. Jimmy Barnes' song 'Working Class Man' references working class culture and hardships.

'Traditional' Working-Class Culture and 'The Rise of Labour': Some Preliminary Questions and Observations. Neville Kirk, Social History, Vol. 16, No. 2 (May, 1991), pp. 203-216.