Developing a Social Class and Classism Consciousness

William M. Liu

in The Oxford Handbook of Counseling Psychology

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780195342314
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

Developing a Social Class and Classism Consciousness

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  • Counselling Psychology



Current methods in psychology to study and understand social class are problematic because using objective indicators of income, education, and occupation may not capture the meaningfulness of social class in a person’s life. I argue for psychologists to shift to a subjective approach to social class and classism. I revise the social class worldview model-revised (SCWM-R) (Liu, 2001, 2002; Liu & Ali, 2008) and elaborate on a complementary framework embedded within the SCWM-R titled the social class and classism consciousness model (SCCC). The SCCC explores the ways in which individuals come to see themselves as socially classed persons. The SCCC has ten levels of social class consciousness ranging from being unconscious about social class to being self-conscious to being social class conscious. I present clinical and research implications and suggests future directions for research concerning social class and classism in psychology.

Keywords: social class; classism; consciousness; worldview

Article.  13450 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Counselling Psychology

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