A survey into South Africa’s black middle class (dealt with in a previous post titled SA’s Black Middle Class: Not What You Thought) has shown this group to be fragmented.
The Sunday Times report on the survey carried an overview of various groups within the black middle class. These groups are repeated below, largely verbatim from the newspaper.
The Established (make up 39% of the black middle class): aged 35 - 49, intellectuals, reasonably well established, most are married with school-going children, most live in the suburbs, strong drivers of the economy, highly educated - many hold high posts in education, very politically aware - many were in exile during apartheid years.
Young Families (22%): in their 20s and 30s, half are single, mostly female, three quarters have children under six, live in suburbs and townships, highly aspirational - the “buppies” of this class, high disposable income, not as highly educated as The Established, less concerned with politics.
The Start-Me-Ups (21%): aged 18-29, largely male. mostly single and childless, majority live with their parents, high disposable income, white-collar jobs, highly positive - “on the way up”, less interested in politics.
The Mzanzi Youth (18%): aged 18 - 24, mostly single and childless, students, low income, highly optimistic, view education as key to better future, happy to live in townships, not too interested in politics.
SA’s Black Middle Class: Not What You Thought