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|Defining social climbing
Written by Golda
(9/19/2004 9:24 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Wealth building v. social climbing, penned by LaurieC
When I think of social climbing, I think of people who are trying to get into another strata or puff themselves up. They hope to be invited to the "right" parties, belong to the "right" clubs, sit on the boards of the "right" organizations, know the "right" people, etc. I can't remember an incident in the book where we see any of the Forsytes trying to go "higher" socially.
In fact, they are quite insulated. There are very few characters in the story who aren't in the family by blood or marriage except servants and employees. It seems to me that they have few friends.
My view of the Forsytes is that they are already upper middle class, they know it, and they live by the social codes of that group. I don't have any sense that they are social climbing -- just building wealth. I'll wait for your example(s) Laurie. ;-)
As for Groucho Marx, I thought of that line too when I read Old Jolyon's "He naturally despised the Club that did take him." Groucho's line went something like this: I wouldn't want to be a member of a club that would take me.
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