11 results back to index
Social Class in the 21st Century by Mike Savage
call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clapham omnibus, Corn Laws, deindustrialization, deskilling, Downton Abbey, financial independence, gender pay gap, Gini coefficient, income inequality, liberal capitalism, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, moral panic, New Urbanism, Occupy movement, old-boy network, precariat, psychological pricing, Sloane Ranger, The Spirit Level, unpaid internship, upwardly mobile, very high income, winner-take-all economy, young professional
The Sunday Times Rich List offers an excellent gauge of these shifts. 3. John Scott, The Upper Class (Basingstoke: 1982). 4. Peter York, ‘The Fall of the Sloane Rangers’, Prospect Magazine, 19 February 2015 or online at http://www.prospectmagazine.co.uk/sound-and-vision/the-fall-of-the-sloane-rangers-made-in-chelsea. 5. ‘Review of Mitford’, Encounter, 5(5), 1955; also to be found in Mike Savage, Identities and Social Change in Britain since 1940: The Politics of Method (Oxford: 2010), Chapter 4. 6. York, ‘The Fall of the Sloane Rangers’. 7. Owen Jones, The Establishment and How They Get Away with It (London: 2014). A useful recent exploration of the ‘Establishment’ concept is Peter Hennessy, Establishment and Meritocracy (London: 2014). 8.
This marked a sharp change from previous decades when the wealthy kept their heads down in a period when equality was seen as a good thing. In the 1970s levels of inequality reached their nadir and tax rates on high-income earners reached their peak. In the 1980s, however, the flaunting of wealth started to take on a new legitimacy. The central cultural motif of the 1980s was the ‘Sloane Ranger’, a phrase coined by the marketing consultant Peter York to recognize the revival of a ‘posh’ landed-gentry aesthetic at the heart of a new consumer culture. But tellingly, as York makes clear, this idiom appealed to an aspirant class who sought to identify with the aristocracy: it was not the revival of the landed class itself.
The Sloane culture we described then was a rather secret garden, neither the grandest toffs, nor the aspirant commercial middle-middles, but something else in between … the newspaper and TV coverage, of course, was overwhelmingly about champagne flutes, luxury brands, Ascot and smart celebrity polo. Increasingly, it became an identity people tried on for size; an identity with proxies in brands and behaviour, rather than beliefs.4 In retrospect, the Sloane Ranger idiom actually looked forward to a consumerist era in which the trappings of ‘posh’ could be identified and attained by upwardly mobile outsiders. It represented the commodification of the posh ‘brand’, and its hiving off from the old landed elite itself. The archetype was Lady Diana Spencer, married into royalty through her unhappy union with Prince Charles in 1981.
No Such Thing as Society by Andy McSmith
anti-communist, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bob Geldof, British Empire, Brixton riot, call centre, cuban missile crisis, Etonian, F. W. de Klerk, Farzad Bazoft, feminist movement, fixed income, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, friendly fire, full employment, glass ceiling, God and Mammon, greed is good, illegal immigration, index card, John Bercow, liberal capitalism, light touch regulation, Live Aid, loadsamoney, long peace, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, mortgage debt, mutually assured destruction, negative equity, Neil Kinnock, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, old-boy network, popular capitalism, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Sloane Ranger, South Sea Bubble, spread of share-ownership, strikebreaker, The Chicago School, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban decay, Winter of Discontent, young professional
Together they were embarking on what would be the most highly publicized event of 1981, although until a few weeks earlier Diana Spencer was barely recognized even within that smart set of wealthy, well-connected young Londoners called the ‘Sloane Rangers’, whose icon she would become. A year of disturbing events, 1981 saw recession, violence in Northern Ireland, and political turmoil, but Diana was a counterpoint to all that. She was the princess of all that was bland. It was entirely fitting that her engagement should be announced in the same week as the launch of the SDP, and that her name should be linked to the Sloane Rangers and to the New Romantics, who – with occasional exceptions – set blandness to the sound of synthesizers.
So if you bought a £60,000 house in January 1988, by the following January, you were in a property worth £80,000. Why leave that £20,000 of extra equity doing nothing when it could be improving your standard of living? All this ready money had its cultural spin-offs. First, there was the arrival of the word ‘yuppie’, which was new to the language. The Official Sloane Ranger Diary, published in 1983, contains multiple references to ‘noovos’ (nouveau rich), but no yuppies. By the end of 1984, the word ‘noovo’ had disappeared, elbowed out by an American import, which was originally short for ‘young urban professionals’ and used to describe those who backed Senator Gary Hart against the more conservative Walter Mondale in the contest for the Democrat nomination in the 1984 presidential election.
It was so popular that it spawned other new acronyms, such as ‘dinkies’, meaning ‘double income, no kids’, and ‘nimbies’, short for ‘not in my backyard’, which applied to homeowners who accepted in principle the need to build roads, houses, shopping centres, but not near their properties. The sociologist Laurie Taylor noted in 1985: The pressure to categorize yourself has become obsessive. No sooner have you decided whether you are a Mayfair Mercenary or a Sloane Ranger than you have to check your NAFF or WALLY tendencies and consider whether you have what it takes to be a YUPPIE, a Yap or a Young Fogey. If you want a grand theory for this phenomenon, you could, I suppose, suggest that it is linked to a firm belief that our present status is unlikely to change in these difficult economic times and that, therefore, we should hang on tightly to what we have got.27 The rise of yuppies followed hot on the heels of another fashion, which seems to have arisen as an indirect result of the 1981 riots.
Fuller Memorandum by Stross, Charles
Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Beeching cuts, British Empire, cognitive dissonance, complexity theory, congestion charging, dumpster diving, finite state, Firefox, HyperCard, invisible hand, land reform, linear programming, peak oil, security theater, sensible shoes, side project, Sloane Ranger, telemarketer, Turing machine
Headless-Shotgun--who has left his trench broom somewhere else--nudges me in the back; another guy (young, blond, probably the friend with the handcuffs) is watching from the far side of the room, while the woman from the cycle path the other night squats in front of me, peering at my face. She's a twenty-something rosy-cheeked embryonic Sloane Ranger--the anti-goth incarnate--with bouncy ponytail and plumped-up lips quirking with humor beneath eyes utterly devoid of anything resembling pity. She probably shops in Harvey Nicks and dotes on her pony. "It speaks," she declares, in a home-counties accent so sharp you could cut glass with it. "Pharaoh be praised."
"We have merely been assuming that the copy of the Fuller Memorandum that James gave your husband contains a corrupted copy of the Sternberg Fragment. But James did not intend the situation to spin this far from his control. The worst possible case is that they have the real thing, the Sternberg Fragment and the document describing the binding of the Eater of Souls, and that they know what to do with it." JONQUIL THE PSYCHOPATHIC SLOANE RANGER HACKS AWAY AT my arm for what feels like a year and is probably a bit less than a minute. Then she gets annoyed. "Julian, do something about the screaming, will you? It's giving me a headache." Julian Headless-Shotgun pulls a leather glove out of one of his pockets and tries to stuff it in my mouth.
It was easy enough to close down the cemetery--police roadblocks, reports about an illegal rave and graveyard vandalism, a handful of D-notices to gag the more annoying local reporters--but then they had to do something with the bodies. The feeders raised just about everything that wasn't totally dismembered and disarticulated. In the end, they had to bring in bulldozers and dig trenches. They identified some of the cultists--but not Jonquil the Sloane Ranger, or her boyfriend Julian. I don't think Brookwood will reopen for a long time. Brains has been given a good talking-to, and is being subjected to the Security Theater Special Variety Show for breaching about sixteen different regulations by installing beta software on an employee's personal phone.
The Fry Chronicles: An Autobiography by Stephen Fry
Alistair Cooke, back-to-the-land, Desert Island Discs, Etonian, Isaac Newton, Live Aid, loadsamoney, pre–internet, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Sloane Ranger, South China Sea, The Wisdom of Crowds, University of East Anglia, Winter of Discontent
I had a wonderful, kind and clever partner in love and a wonderful, kind and clever partner in work. The nightmare of the forest seemed a long distance behind me. I cried and cried until at last I fell asleep. Comedy Enough time has passed for the 1980s to have taken on an agreed identity, colour, style and flavour. Sloane Rangers, big hair, Dire Straits, black smoked-glass tables, unstructured jackets, New Romantics, shoulder pads, nouvelle cuisine, Yuppies … we have all seen plenty of television programmes flashing images of all that past our eyes and insisting that this is what the decade meant. As it happens, resistant to cliché as I try to be, the eighties for me conformed almost exactly to every one of those rather shallow representations.
Meanwhile, journalism was taking up more and more of my time. Columnist Britain’s magazine industry started to boom in the early to mid-eighties. Tatler, Harper’s & Queen and the newly revivified Vanity Fair, what you might call the Princess Di sector, fed the public appetite for information about the affairs of the Sloane Rangers, the stylings of their kitchens and country houses and the guest-lists of their parties. Vogue and Cosmopolitan rode high for the fashion-conscious and sexually sophisticated, City Limits and Time Out sold everywhere, and Nick Logan’s The Face dominated youth fashion and trendy style at a time when it was still trendy to use the word trendy.
Bakken shale, bank run, Credit Default Swap, diversification, fixed income, Gordon Gekko, index fund, light touch regulation, locking in a profit, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, paper trading, peak oil, Ponzi scheme, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, side project, Silicon Valley, Sloane Ranger, sovereign wealth fund, supply-chain management, the market place
His returns in 2009 and 2010 had been strong, if not superlative, and BlueGold had established itself as a major player in London’s commodity-trading business. The fund, which now occupied a gracious office in the city’s pricey Sloane Square neighborhood, an area famous for a particular brand of British gentry known as the “Sloane Rangers,” was a fixture in the international financial press and managed billions of dollars in client money. Since its inception, the firm had returned more than five times its invested cash, or capital—all during a period in which the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index and the S&P had fallen hard. Noting the wild range of prices in the oil markets, “we are pleased with how we have navigated all of these energy markets—bullish, bearish, and last year’s trendless range bound market,” Andurand and Crema wrote in their January 2011 investor letter.
airport security, blood diamonds, colonial rule, credit crunch, fixed income, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, high net worth, income inequality, jitney, market clearing, Occupy movement, Sloane Ranger, the market place
Then we meet at a bar and drink. Networking As I said my good-byes in the London office, one of the traders pulled me aside. Artie had not only been a colleague but also a close friend during my time in the UK. Our shared interests include golf, drinking, and posh British chicks (specifically Sloane Rangers). We lived within blocks of each other in Chelsea and would spend several nights a week rotating between the Big Easy, the Admiral Codrington, and any number of regular spots on Walton Street, fending off the semipros and cougars who dominate that scene. “Listen, when you get to Hong Kong, I want to set you up with a friend of mine,” Artie said.
Corduroy Mansions: A Novel by Alexander McCall Smith
They forgot it when they were unkind to people because of where they came from, or because they were different, or because they had greasy skin. Her father was right. “She can’t help that, you know,” she pointed out. “She can’t help the way she talks, can she? None of us can.” Dee had found herself unable to argue with that, although she mumbled something about Sloane Rangers. But they both decided that they would not object to Caroline’s admission to the flat, which was just as well because Jenny announced when she came back into the room that Caroline would be moving in. “Why did she ask us to interview her if she was going to make up her mind by herself?” Jo later complained to Dee.
The London Compendium by Ed Glinert
1960s counterculture, anti-communist, Big bang: deregulation of the City of London, Bob Geldof, British Empire, Brixton riot, Corn Laws, Dava Sobel, double entry bookkeeping, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Exxon Valdez, hiring and firing, invention of the telegraph, Isaac Newton, John Harrison: Longitude, John Snow's cholera map, Khartoum Gordon, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, Nick Leeson, price stability, Ronald Reagan, Sloane Ranger, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, spice trade, the market place, trade route, union organizing, V2 rocket
(i) The Cadogan Estate An estate of some 4,000 flats, 700 houses and 300 shops built in a flamboyant Flemish style with much red brick, the Cadogan Estate, which lies either side of Sloane Street, is owned by the Cadogan family, hence the use of the name for several streets, and is home to several of Britain’s most celebrated stores, particularly Harrods. In 1975 Peter York coined the name ‘Sloane Ranger’ in the magazine Harpers and Queen to describe the kind of wealthy local socialite who in the 1920s would have been called a ‘Bright Young Thing’ and in the 1960s an ‘International Jet-setter’, whose embodiment was the late Princess of Wales. Brompton Road Harrods, Nos. 87–135 London’s most prestigious, and Europe’s largest, department store, its motto omnia, omnibus, ubique (‘everything for everyone everywhere’), opened as a small grocery store, run by Henry Harrod in Stepney, in 1835, moved to Eastcheap in the City, and then to Belgravia in 1849.
Great Britain by David Else, Fionn Davenport
active transport: walking or cycling, Albert Einstein, Beeching cuts, British Empire, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, colonial rule, Columbine, congestion charging, credit crunch, David Attenborough, Etonian, food miles, glass ceiling, global village, haute cuisine, illegal immigration, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, land reform, Livingstone, I presume, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, mega-rich, negative equity, new economy, North Sea oil, Northern Rock, offshore financial centre, period drama, place-making, Skype, Sloane Ranger, South of Market, San Francisco, Stephen Hawking, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Winter of Discontent
Soho is undoubtedly the heart of bar culture, with enough variety to cater to all tastes. Camden’s great for grungy boozers and rock kids, although it’s facing stiff competition on the Bohemian-cool front from the venues around Hoxton and Shoreditch. Now that Princes William and Harry have hit their stride, the Sloane Ranger scene has been reborn in exclusive venues in South Ken(sington), although the ‘Turbo Sloanes’ now count mega-rich commoners among their numbers. The rest of us mere mortals will find plenty of pub-crawl potential in places like Islington, Clerkenwell, Southwark, Notting Hill, Earl’s Court…hell, it’s just not that difficult.
England by David Else
active transport: walking or cycling, Albert Einstein, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, British Empire, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, colonial rule, Columbine, congestion charging, David Attenborough, David Brooks, Etonian, food miles, glass ceiling, haute cuisine, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, new economy, New Urbanism, out of africa, period drama, place-making, sceptred isle, Skype, Sloane Ranger, South of Market, San Francisco, Stephen Hawking, the market place, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transatlantic slave trade, unbiased observer, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Winter of Discontent
Soho is undoubtedly the heart of bar culture, with enough variety to cater to all tastes. Camden’s great for grungy boozers and rock kids, although it’s facing stiff competition on the Bohemian-cool front from the venues around Hoxton and Shoreditch. Now that Princes William and Harry have hit their stride, the Sloane Ranger scene has been reborn in exclusive venues in South Ken(sington), although the ‘Turbo Sloanes’ now count megarich commoners among their numbers. Us mere mortals will find plenty of pub-crawl potential in places like Clerkenwell, Islington, Southwark, Notting Hill, Earl’s Court…hell, it’s just not that difficult.
France (Lonely Planet, 8th Edition) by Nicola Williams
active transport: walking or cycling, back-to-the-land, bike sharing scheme, British Empire, car-free, carbon footprint, centre right, Columbine, double helix, Guggenheim Bilbao, haute couture, haute cuisine, Henri Poincaré, Honoré de Balzac, illegal immigration, industrial robot, information trail, Jacquard loom, Jacquard loom, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Louis Blériot, Louis Pasteur, low cost carrier, Mahatma Gandhi, means of production, Murano, Venice glass, pension reform, QWERTY keyboard, ride hailing / ride sharing, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Skype, Sloane Ranger, supervolcano, trade route, urban renewal, urban sprawl, V2 rocket
* * * Return to beginning of chapter LIFESTYLE Be a fly on the wall in the 5th-floor bourgeois apartment of Monsieur et Madame Tout le Monde and you’ll see them dunking croissants in bowls of café au lait for breakfast, buying a baguette every day from the bakery (Monsieur nibbles the top off on his way home) and recycling nothing bar a few glass bottles. They go to the flicks once a month, work 35 hours a week and view the web-radio production company their 24-year-old son set up and heads in Paris with a mix of pride, amusement and scepticism. Their 20-year-old daughter, who is so BCBG darling (BCBG – bon chic, bon genre – a Sloane Ranger in non-Parisian speak), is a student – France’s overcrowded state-run universities are free and open to anyone who passes the baccalauréat, although Sarkozy had a stab at changing this in 2007 by giving universities the autonomy to select students and seek outside funding. * * * Sixty Million Frenchmen Can’t be Wrong: What Makes the French so French ask Jean-Benoît Nadeau and Julie Barlow in their witty, well-written and at times downright comical musings on one of Europe’s most contradictory nationalities