Originally Posted by mellow
Aw, I opened this thread looking forward to a comparison of the mindset of middle class vs wealthy people, not a "what's the best way to get rich" thread. I'm going to a halfway decent school for undergrad, so I'm in touch with kids from all levels of society.
The middle class students I know put so much pressure on themselves. So many conversations that go: "Well, I really like [x], but I'm trying to get into medical school. Maybe I can do [x] as a hobby."
The few old money students I know have an odd regard for their future. Taking up the family business seems like an inevitability, so they have this attitude that is carefree and focused at the same time. The poor friends I have take whatever classes they are interested in without being embarrassed about it.
This sounds about right. However, although I would agree that all of those match their family's background, there is no correlation in terms of wealth, ie, that while the "lower class attitude" kids come from working-class-ish families (which, for sake of argument, will include any sort of physical labour or even anything one level near there; so engineering counts), there isn't much (read: any) of a wealth disparity between them and the middle class kids who come from middle class (those whose jobs are basically "capital/corporate cogs") or upper class (those who own things).
Another old thing I remember about this is that the lower class defines itself in terms of labour (I make X, I clean X, etc), the middle class in terms of wealth, and the upper class knows that its the upper class.