The ANES Guide to Public Opinion and Electoral Behavior

Social Class (Self-Identification) 1956-2016

  '56 '58 '60 '62 '64 '66 '68 '70 '72 '74 '76 '78 '80 '82 '84 '86 '88 '90 '92 '94 '96 '98 '00 '02 '04 '08 '12 '16
Average Working 52
(882)
52
(920)
- ** - 47
(591)
44
(659)
44
(635)
44
(1157)
43
(1018)
43
(1173)
42
(923)
41
(620)
42
(573)
42
(904)
- 42
(823)
45
(872)
42
(1013)
42
(727)
** ** 39
(675)
** 38
(442)
41
(872)
36
(2047)
38
(587)
Working, NA Avg. or Upper 2
(38)
1
(21)
67
(1247)
** 59
(880)
2
(20)
2
(23)
2
(22)
1
(18)
1
(34)
2
(42)
1
(29)
1
(15)
2
(23)
1
(15)
51
(1056)
2
(44)
1
(13)
2
(42)
1
(20)
** ** 1
(12)
** 1
(7)
1
(13)
1
(73)
1
(13)
Upper Working 9
(146)
7
(129)
- ** - 10
(130)
9
(142)
9
(124)
10
(261)
11
(255)
9
(247)
10
(211)
10
(148)
10
(134)
9
(198)
- 9
(166)
8
(162)
8
(195)
8
(133)
** ** 8
(145)
** 8
(94)
10
(214)
8
(430)
8
(121)
Average Middle 30
(504)
30
(523)
- ** - 30
(380)
33
(493)
35
(505)
35
(910)
34
(821)
34
(936)
36
(787)
37
(553)
36
(487)
38
(832)
- 35
(669)
36
(684)
36
(870)
37
(645)
** ** 38
(652)
** 37
(427)
39
(833)
42
(2369)
38
(586)
Middle, NA Avg. or Upper 0
(7)
1
(9)
33
(614)
** 41
(619)
2
(24)
1
(13)
1
(19)
1
(23)
1
(26)
2
(43)
1
(24)
1
(15)
1
(9)
1
(15)
49
(1025)
2
(30)
1
(15)
1
(27)
1
(11)
** ** 1
(15)
** 1
(8)
0
(9)
1
(80)
1
(22)
Upper Middle 7
(117)
9
(153)
- ** - 8
(102)
11
(165)
10
(147)
9
(245)
10
(230)
11
(306)
11
(232)
10
(150)
9
(128)
10
(209)
- 11
(206)
9
(175)
10
(247)
12
(205)
** ** 13
(222)
** 15
(171)
10
(208)
12
(688)
14
(220)
N 1694 1755 1861 0 1499 1247 1495 1452 2614 2384 2747 2206 1501 1354 2173 2081 1938 1921 2394 1741 0 0 1721 0 1149 2149 5687 1549

Percentage Within Study Year
Table 1A.8.

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Question Text:

"Most people say they belong either to the middle class or the working class. Do you ever think of yourself as belonging in one of these classes?"
(IF YES:) "Which one?" /
(IF NO:) "Well, if you had to make a choice, would you call yourself middle class or working class?"
(IF MIDDLE CLASS/WORKING CLASS:) "Would you say that you are about average middle/working class or that you are in the upper part of the middle/working class?"

Note:

In 1960,1964 and 1986, the final question was not asked and all responses in these 3 years have been coded middle or working class 'NA average or upper.'

2012 and 2016 data are for the combined (face-to-face and internet) sample.

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