Tuesday, October 04, 2016

"Class Divide", an HBO documentary

Last night, this new documentary was watched here.  It is set in west Chelsea in Manhattan and looks at an expensive new private school, Avenues, established in 2012 that was built just across 9th Avenue from low end housing projects.  Interviews with students who attend the school and young people from the projects in the area show the completely divided perceptions that they have of each other.  There was not really new information here, but it was certainly a film that gave an in depth look at the phenomenon of gentrification, or richification, in places like Manhattan.

The telling point was "class" and "wealth" for the most part, rather than any overt racism on either side.  A sense of learned fear drew lines for the privileged students, no matter how open minded at heart, and a sense of inevitability and invisibility contained the project youth whose insights were straightforward and wistful.

"Class Divide" was a compelling film without any outright, or finger pointing, moralizing.  It is worth watching.

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