inspiral + socialclass   62

How I learnt to loathe England | Prospect Magazine
Ever since the referendum, friends from across the world have been enquiring whether it is true that the British have gone mad. Without those six years in London, I would have unhesitatingly said “yes.” “A temporary bout of insanity” still seems the preferred explanation in much of Europe and among many British Remainers. But years of immersion in English culture and society have convinced me that actually, the Brexit vote should instead be seen as the logical and overdue outcome of a set of English pathologies.
Brexit  socialclass  EuropeanUnion  UK  review  personalaccount  critique  Prospect  2017 
6 weeks ago by inspiral
Grace Dent: ‘The processed food debate is MSG-sprinkled class war' | Life and style | The Guardian
Healthy-food campaigners may be sincere, but they do not know the pure joy of a Birds Eye potato waffle or Mint Viennetta
food  socialclass  review  personalaccount  author:GraceDent  Guardian  2018 
june 2018 by inspiral
Privileged kids need to stop fetishising working class culture
Artist Hetty Douglas' offensive Instagram post about blokes in construction gear having few GCSEs has pissed off a lot people, but it's reflective of a wider trend: people embracing working class culture while also showing contempt for working class people, writes Dawn Foster.
socialclass  workingclass  review  critique  HettyDouglas  Huck  2017 
september 2017 by inspiral
Stop Pretending You’re Not Rich - The New York Times
So imagine my horror at discovering that the United States is more calcified by class than Britain, especially toward the top. The big difference is that most of the people on the highest rung in America are in denial about their privilege. The American myth of meritocracy allows them to attribute their position to their brilliance and diligence, rather than to luck or a rigged system. At least posh people in England have the decency to feel guilty.

In Britain, it is politically impossible to be prime minister and send your children to the equivalent of a private high school. Even Old Etonian David Cameron couldn’t do it. In the United States, the most liberal politician can pay for a lavish education in the private sector. Some of my most progressive friends send their children to $30,000-a-year high schools. The surprise is not that they do it. It is that they do it without so much as a murmur of moral disquiet.

Beneath a veneer of classlessness, the American class reproduction machine operates with ruthless efficiency. In particular, the upper middle class is solidifying. This favored fifth at the top of the income distribution, with an average annual household income of $200,000, has been separating from the 80 percent below. Collectively, this top fifth has seen a $4 trillion-plus increase in pretax income since 1979, compared to just over $3 trillion for everyone else. Some of those gains went to the top 1 percent. But most went to the 19 percent just beneath them.
socialclass  socialmobility  comparison  UK  USA  review  critique  NYTimes  2017 
june 2017 by inspiral
Blowing in the wind: why do so many cities have poor east ends? | Cities | The Guardian
From London to Paris, New York to Helsinki, poverty tends to cluster in the east. A new study sheds light on this global pattern of poverty
urbandevelopment  cities  wind  pollution  wealth  socialclass  London  Paris  NewYork  review  research  Guardian  2017 
may 2017 by inspiral
Informal dress and social mobility, a Sicilian perspective - Marginal REVOLUTION
There is another aspect that corroborates your theory on how casual dress is somehow connected to less mobility. Dressing in a casual but very good way is economically and “socially” expensive. When I was a young associate at the biggest law firm in Rome, casual friday was the time when my Sicilian provincial middle-lower class background was most transparent. I didn’t have the money for smart but impressive casual clothing. But above all I didn’t have the cultural and social capital to know how to dress casual in the right way. My casual dressing was made of nerdy, unfashionable and cheap clothes: you could immediately say that I haven’t accomplished anything. And I didn’t even know that there was a “rich” way to dress casual. A decent suit and tie is not that expensive but, above all, is socially and culturally accessible in a very easy, standard and replicable way.

Perhaps this is a problem that affects women more seriously than men, exactly for the same reason: women’s formal clothing is not as standard and replicable as men’s. For women, even formal business dressing reveals a lot of background.
fashion  clothing  socialclass  MarginalRevolution  2017 
may 2017 by inspiral
Oxford University launches summer school aimed at white working-class British boys
Oxford University has launched a summer school aimed at white British boys, in an effort to increase its intake of working class students.

It is the first time the university has ever specifically targeted this demographic, which is one of the most underrepresented groups in higher education.
OxfordUniversity  diversity  socialclass  workingclass  male  Telegraph  2017 
march 2017 by inspiral
Maniac Killers of the Bangalore IT Department - Bloomberg
Technology was supposed to deliver India from poverty, but in Bangalore it’s also deepened the division between rich and poor, young and old, modern and traditional. As the city has grown richer, it’s also become unruly and unfamiliar. If the tech worker is the star of the Indian economy, then the techie is his shadow—spoiled, untrustworthy, adulterous, depressed, and sometimes just plain senseless. (“TECHIE WITH EARPHONES RUN OVER BY TRAIN.”) In one occupational boogeyman, Bangaloreans can see their future and their fears
tech  crime  socialclass  Bangalore  India  Bloomberg  2017 
february 2017 by inspiral
How Rich People See the World Differently -- Science of Us
In something of a dark irony, the respondents of higher socioeconomic status rated themselves as more empathic — a “better-than-average effect” that Varnum followed up on in a separate study — when in reality the opposite was true. The results “show that people who are higher in socioeconomic status have diminished neural responses to others’ pain,” the authors write. “These findings suggest that empathy, at least some early component of it, is reduced among those who are higher in status.” And unlike self-reports, brain imaging sidesteps “social desirability bias,” where people want to give replies that make them look good or more empathic. “If you’re looking at pictures of people in pain or not in pain, it’s pretty unlikely that you know how to enhance those brain responses,” Varnum tells Science of Us. Moreover, in a 2016 study, Varnum and colleagues found evidence suggesting that people from lower social classes have a more sensitive mirror neuron system — which is thought to simulate the things you see others experience — when watching a video of hand movements. “Our cognitive systems, the degree to which they’re attuned to other people in the environment, is affected by our own social class,” he says.
wealth  income  socialclass  psychology  research  consumer  NYMag  2017 
february 2017 by inspiral
J.D. Vance, the False Prophet of Blue America | New Republic
But that doesn’t mean we should repeat the establishment failures of this election cycle and minimize the influence of economic precarity. Trump is a racist and a sexist, but his victory is not due only to racism or sexism any more than it is due only to classism: He still won white women and a number of counties that had voted for Obama twice. This is not a simple story, and it never really has been.

We don’t need to normalize Trumpism or empathize with white supremacy to reach these voters. They weren’t destined to vote for Trump; many were Democratic voters. They aren’t destined to stay loyal to him in the future. To win them back, we must address their material concerns, and we can do that without coddling their prejudices. After all, America’s most famous progressive populist—Bernie Sanders—won many of the counties Clinton lost to Trump.
DonaldTrump  politics  elections  JDVance  critique  socialclass  race  NewRepublic  2016 
november 2016 by inspiral
Clinton Couldn’t Win Over White Women | FiveThirtyEight
But Clinton’s stunning loss Tuesday night showed that issues of culture and class mattered more to many American women than their gender. The sisterhood, as real sisterhood tends to be, turned out to be riddled with complications.
HillaryClinton  elections  politics  women  gender  socialclass  critique  USA  FiveThirtyEight  2016 
november 2016 by inspiral
Donald Trump's supporters deserve our support, not our scorn — Quartz
The United States is a place divided by race, class, and education. The 2016 election has divided us further. While minorities overwhelmingly favor the Democratic nominee for president, Hillary Clinton, whites are split at historic levels along the lines of educational background. Those with a college degree, the front-row kids, are much more likely to support Clinton than those without—the kids in the back.
Much of the reason for the divide lies in the fact that the front row is doing much better than the back row. While those in the back row earn about a fifth less than they did 35 years ago, the front row now earns more.
But the rift between Americans goes deeper than that. I am a front-row kid who has spent much of the last five years among those in the back row. And what I have seen are very different versions of America, with fundamentally different values and concepts of personal meaning.
DonaldTrump  politics  review  socialclass  USA  author:ChrisArnade  Quartz  2016 
november 2016 by inspiral
Hillary Clinton and the Populist Revolt - The New Yorker
Summers described the current Democratic Party as “a coalition of the cosmopolitan élite and diversity.” The Republicans, he went on, combined “social conservatism and an agenda of helping rich people.” These alignments left neither party in synch with Americans like Mark Frisbie: “All these regular people who thought they are kind of the soul of the country—they feel like there was nobody who seemed to be thinking a lot about them.”
HillaryClinton  politics  Republicans  Democrats  race  socialclass  white  review  USA  NewYorker  2016 
october 2016 by inspiral
Dangerous idiots: how the liberal media elite failed working-class Americans | Media | The Guardian
The economic trench between reporter and reported on has never been more hazardous than at this moment of historic wealth disparity, though, when stories focus more often on the stock market than on people who own no stocks. American journalism has been willfully obtuse about the grievances on Main Streets for decades – surely a factor in digging the hole of resentment that Trump’s venom now fills. That the term “populism” has become a pejorative among prominent liberal commentators should give us great pause. A journalism that embodies the plutocracy it’s supposed to critique has failed its watchdog duty and lost the respect of people who call bullshit when they see it.
DonaldTrump  media  journalism  socialclass  race  racism  review  critique  diversity  Guardian  2016 
october 2016 by inspiral
Blame it on the bike: does cycling contribute to a city's gentrification? | Cities | The Guardian
Hostility to cyclists and bike lanes often seems to be a proxy for wider anger at gentrification. But does this urban phenomenon really arrive on two wheels – or is new cycle infrastructure a sign the street has already transformed?
cycling  bikelanes  gentrification  urbandevelopment  ethnicity  socialclass  review  Guardian  2016 
october 2016 by inspiral
Cocoa by candlelight | The Economist
But not all Danes agree. Jeppe Trolle Linnet, an anthropologist at the University of Southern Denmark, argues that hygge is not the great social leveller it appears. Danes dislike acknowledging class differences, but his research finds that the habits of hygge vary by income and social status. For some, hygge is a bottle of burgundy with soft jazz on the hi-fi; for others it is a can of beer while watching football on telly. Worse, different groups are uncomfortable with others’ interpretations of hygge. Mr Linnet calls it a “vehicle of social control”, involving “a negative stereotyping of social groups who are perceived as unable to create hygge”.

In this, hygge resembles the German quality of gemütlichkeit, which also implies a sense of cosiness, peace of mind and—crucially—social acceptance. And although the desire for communality does encourage social solidarity, it can also mean excluding strangers. Getting to hygge with a local is not always easy: in Denmark even crowded buses can be eerily silent. Danes have a reputation for aloofness.
Hygge  culture  xenophobia  socialclass  review  Denmark  Economist  2016 
october 2016 by inspiral
Top graduates missing out on banking jobs for lacking 'polish' | Society | The Guardian
New study into social exclusion in investment banking reveals barriers put in way of ‘non-privileged’ applicants
banking  financialservices  employment  discrimination  recruitment  socialclass  research  critique  Guardian  2016 
september 2016 by inspiral
Our changing relationship with music and its new practical function — MUSIC x TECH x FUTURE — Medium
Here is the big issue. Music for new generations is not about reflecting their unique personas, but a mirror of the activity he or she is performing. Music was once a question of loyalty and identity. Today it’s a good consumed according to moments. So the musical preferences of these listeners is much more flexible and no longer the reflection of their identities.
music  identity  socialclass  evolution  review  Spotify  playlist  author:ThiagoRPinto  Medium  2016 
august 2016 by inspiral
Is the new meritocracy a sham? | Society | The Guardian
Like many Tories before her, Theresa May has said that talent should rise to the top, regardless of background. But can you have equality of opportunity when the gap between the haves and have-nots is wider than ever? Ed Miliband, Michaela Coel and Ken Loach talk about the wisdom of reviving this postwar dream
meritocracy  socialclass  socialmobility  critique  review  SuttonTrust  UK  Guardian  2016 
august 2016 by inspiral
The Despair of Poor White Americans - The Atlantic
The clustering is intensifying within regions, too. Since 1980, the share of upper-income households living in census tracts that are majority upper-income, rather than scattered throughout more mixed-income neighborhoods, has doubled. The upper echelon has increasingly sought comfort in prosperous insularity, withdrawing its abundant social capital from communities that relied on that capital’s overflow, and consolidating it in oversaturated enclaves.

So why are white Americans in downwardly mobile areas feeling a despair that appears to be driving stark increases in substance abuse and suicide? In my own reporting in Vance’s home ground of southwestern Ohio and ancestral territory of eastern Kentucky, I have encountered racial anxiety and antagonism, for sure. But far more striking is the general aura of decline that hangs over towns in which medical-supply stores and pawn shops dominate decrepit main streets, and Victorians stand crumbling, unoccupied. Talk with those still sticking it out, the body-shop worker and the dollar-store clerk and the unemployed miner, and the fatalism is clear: Things were much better in an earlier time, and no future awaits in places that have been left behind by polished people in gleaming cities. The most painful comparison is not with supposedly ascendant minorities—it’s with the fortunes of one’s own parents or, by now, grandparents. The demoralizing effect of decay enveloping the place you live cannot be underestimated. And the bitterness—the “primal scorn”—that Donald Trump has tapped into among white Americans in struggling areas is aimed not just at those of foreign extraction. It is directed toward fellow countrymen who have become foreigners of a different sort, looking down on the natives, if they bother to look at all.
socialclass  whitetrash  race  inequality  polarisation  politics  TheAtlantic  2016 
august 2016 by inspiral
Is an algorithm any less racist than a human? | Technology | The Guardian
While algorithms might work with data alone, it’s always human beings that decide what factors they weigh. Law professor and sociologist Ifeoma Ajunwa is authoring a paper on hiring by algorithm, and she asserts that many of the data points we think of as “neutral” – housing status, education level, credit score or even criminal record – are actually wrapped up in assumptions that ignore elements of racial inequality. She notes this “societal noise” plays a role in reinforcing our assumptions about data: for example, we may view a standardised test score as a fair measure of aptitude, but we rarely ask how those scores function in communities where schools are racially and economically segregated. When not all students begin at the same level of access to resources, a test score offers an incomplete picture.
algorithms  discrimination  racism  socialclass  critique  Guardian  2016 
august 2016 by inspiral
Trump: Tribune Of Poor White People | The American Conservative
I wrote last week about the new nonfiction book Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and a Culture in Crisis by J.D. Vance, the Yale Law School graduate who grew up in the poverty and chaos of an Appalachian clan. The book is an American classic, an extraordinary testimony to the brokenness of the white working class, but also its strengths. It’s one of the best books I’ve ever read. With the possible exception of Yuval Levin’s The Fractured Republic, for Americans who care about politics and the future of our country, Hillbilly Elegy is the most important book of 2016. You cannot understand what’s happening now without first reading J.D. Vance. His book does for poor white people what Ta-Nehisi Coates’s book did for poor black people: give them voice and presence in the public square.
JDVance  interview  DonaldTrump  socialclass  politics  poverty  USA  TheAmericanConservative  2016 
july 2016 by inspiral
John Lanchester · Brexit Blues · LRB 28 July 2016
None of this is what working-class voters had in mind when they opted for Leave. If it’s combined with the policy every business interest in the UK wants – the Norwegian option, in which we contribute to the EU and accept free movement of labour, i.e. immigration, as part of the price – it will be a profound betrayal of much of the Leave vote. If we do anything else, we will be inflicting severe economic damage on ourselves, and following a policy which most of the electorate (48 per cent Remain, plus economically liberal Leavers) think is wrong. So the likeliest outcome, I’d have thought, is a betrayal of the white working class. They should be used to it by now.
Brexit  EuropeanUnion  referendum  impact  immigration  politics  socialclass  economy  financialservices  Conservatives  TheresaMay  DavidCameron  author:JohnLanchester  LondonReviewofBooks  2016 
july 2016 by inspiral
Grieve now if you must – but prepare for the great challenges ahead | Owen Jones | Opinion | The Guardian
This was not a vote on the undeniable lack of accountability and transparency of the European Union. Above all else, it was about immigration, which has become the prism through which millions of people see everyday problems: the lack of affordable housing; the lack of secure jobs; stagnating living standards; strained public services. Young remainers living in major urban centres tend to feel limited hostility towards immigration; it could hardly be more different for older working-class leavers in many northern cities and smaller towns. Indeed, the generational gap is critical to understanding this result. The growing chasm between the generations has only been deepened.
EuropeanUnion  Brexit  referendum  socialclass  division  impact  UK  author:OwenJones  Guardian  2016 
june 2016 by inspiral
Cycling’s Dodgy Dossier | cyclableblog
Economist Professor Begg plays the class warrior in a report of which he is the author, entitled ‘The Impact of Congestion on Bus Passengers’. The report was commissioned by an organisation with the eco-friendly sounding name, Greener Journeys. Greener Journeys actually describes itself as a ‘campaign’ to promote bus and coach travel.

However, Greener Journeys is funded by bus companies. Professor Begg is chairman of the campaign’s advisory board. He is also a non-executive director of the bus company First Bus, one of the companies that bankrolls Greener Journeys.
cycling  socialclass  comparison  publictransport  bus  DavidBegg  critique  research  GreenerJourneys  cyclableblog  2016 
june 2016 by inspiral
The Experience of Class - RSA
Why is class still so central to the experience of living in Britain?

Entwined with class is the idea of aspiration, of social mobility, which is perceived as an unequivocally positive phenomenon for individuals and for society as a whole. Yet for the many who experience it, changing class is like emigrating from one side of the world to the other, a disruptive process that can leave people divided between the place they left and the place they have to inhabit in order to get on.

At the RSA, writer and journalist Lynsey Hanley explores the idea of class in Britain today, examining how people are kept apart, and keep themselves apart, and the costs involved in the journey from ‘there’ to ‘here’.
socialclass  socialmobility  UK  talk  LynseyHanley  London  RSA  2016 
june 2016 by inspiral
Adults Media Use and Attitudes Report 2016 | Ofcom
This report is published as part of our media literacy duties. It provides research that looks at media use, attitudes and understanding, and how these change over time, with a particular focus on those groups that tend not to participate digitally. The report covers TV, radio, mobile, games, and the internet, with a particular focus on the latter.

The report focuses on the current wave of research which was conducted in autumn 2015 and any key changes compared to 2014.
internet  mobileinternet  ecommerce  mobilecommerce  mobilebanking  onlinebanking  Facebook  WhatsApp  Instagram  LinkedIn  Pinterest  Tumblr  privacy  security  demographics  socialclass  gaming  mobilegaming  tablets  PCs  smartphones  penetration  statistics  UK  Ofcom  2016 
april 2016 by inspiral
Mocked and forgotten: who will speak for the American white working class? | US news | The Guardian
When you listen to poor people who work with their hands, you hear a uniform frustration and a constant anxiety – but it’s not just about economic issues
DonaldTrump  politics  white  racism  socialclass  bifurcation  incomeinequality  decline  USA  Guardian  2016 
april 2016 by inspiral
Why Donald Trump? | FiveThirtyEight
The Upshot’s look at the geography of Trumpism showed a number of variables linked to areas of deep Trump support — counties where a high proportion of the population is white with no high school diploma, where there are large numbers of mobile homes, and where there is a poor labor-force participation rate. Political scientists Michael Tesler and John Sides recently pointed to new research that shows “both white racial identity and beliefs that whites are treated unfairly are powerful predictors of support for Donald Trump in the Republican primaries.”
DonaldTrump  politics  elections  race  socialclass  education  review  research  USA  FiveThirtyEight  2016 
march 2016 by inspiral
Uber: a route out of the French banlieues -
Ride-hailing apps have created jobs for Paris’s poorer youth, but a regulatory clampdown looms
Uber  ridesharing  banlieues  socialclass  immigration  socialmobility  Paris  France  regulations  review  FinancialTimes  2016 
march 2016 by inspiral
Equality in Marriages Grows, and So Does Class Divide - The New York Times
With more marriages of equals, reflecting deep changes in American families and society at large, the country is becoming more segregated by class.

“It’s this notion of this growing equality between husbands and wives having this paradoxical effect of growing inequality across households,” said Christine Schwartz, a sociologist who studies the topic at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
marriage  relationships  socialclass  assortativemating  gender  segregation  NYTimes  2016 
february 2016 by inspiral
In defence of pretentiousness | Dan Fox | Society | The Guardian
Being pretentious is rarely harmful to anyone. Accusing others of it is. You can use the word “pretentious” as a weapon with which to bludgeon other people’s creative efforts, but in shutting them down the accusation will shatter in your hand and out will bleed your own insecurities, prejudices and unquestioned assumptions. And that is why pretentiousness matters. It is a false note of objective judgment, and when it rings we can hear what society values in culture, hear how we perceive our individual selves.
prententiousness  culture  authenticity  socialclass  review  author:DanFox  Guardian  2016 
february 2016 by inspiral
Most Americans Aren’t Middle Class Anymore | FiveThirtyEight
First of all, it’s important to note that the middle class is shrinking not just because more people are poor but also because more people are rich. The share of Americans that are in high-earning households, those with more than double the median income, has grown by seven percentage points since 1971. The share of low earners, those earning less than two-thirds the median, has grown just four percentage points. In fact, what Pew calls the “hollowing of the American middle class” is even starker than that: Most of the growth has come at the extreme bottom and top of the income spectrum. In other words, the shrinking of the middle class is less about decline than polarization.
income  incomeinequality  socialclass  middleclass  education  ethnicity  USA  PewResearch  FiveThirtyEight  2015 
december 2015 by inspiral
Why are London cyclists so white, male and middle-class? | UK news | The Guardian
A fascinating study of why some Londoners cycle and others don’t illuminates cultural obstacles Boris Johnson’s cycling plans must overcome
cycling  advocacy  socialclass  London  critique  author:DaveHill  Guardian  2015 
october 2015 by inspiral
Leave class out of the London cycling debate | Environment | The Guardian
Whatever you think about the capital’s cycle provision, jibes about ‘City boys’ or the middle class are a silly diversion from the real problems
cycling  advocacy  socialclass  London  critique  UK  author:PeterWalker  Guardian  2015 
october 2015 by inspiral
Education and class: America’s new aristocracy | The Economist
As the importance of intellectual capital grows, privilege has become increasingly heritable
socialclass  education  preschooleducation  wealth  USA  Economist  2015 
january 2015 by inspiral
Talk to Your Kids
The poorer parents are, the less they talk with their children. The mayor of Providence is trying to close the “word gap.”
children  development  language  socialclass  research  TheAtlantic  2015 
january 2015 by inspiral
From Tatler to Gogglebox: how TV learned to love posh people | Television & radio | The Guardian
Upper-class types are all over our screens with their red cords, strange rules and loud opinions. Why now? Ken Loach, Grayson Perry and Francis Fulford try to explain the appeal
upperclass  socialclass  television  trends  Guardian  2014 
november 2014 by inspiral
Tim Harford — Article — A passport to privilege
Class matters far less than it used to in the 19th century. Citizenship matters far more
inequality  country  socialclass  history  evolution  comparison  author:TimHarford  2014 
november 2014 by inspiral
The shame of poor teeth in a rich world – Sarah Smarsh – Aeon
If you have a mouthful of teeth shaped by a childhood in poverty, don’t go knocking on the door of American privilege
teeth  healthcare  privilege  socialclass  Aeon  2014 
october 2014 by inspiral
Posh Britain: will they always lord it over us? | Life and style | The Guardian
In new film The Riot Club, based loosely on the antics of the notorious Bullingdon boys, a gaggle of toffs trash restaurants for larks. Who are these people, how did they turn out like this – and what does it tell us about privilege today?
socialclass  upperclass  UK  critique  TheGuardian  2014 
september 2014 by inspiral
How I Rebuilt Tinder And Discovered The Shameful Secret Of Attraction
Ultimately, this admittedly un-randomized sample seems to suggest that the raw idea of attraction — that knee-jerk “thinking from the genitals” decision — has less to do with our unmentionable parts and much more to do with a combination of our deepest subconscious biases and with our most overt and uncharitable personal politics. And if that’s the case, it’s no doubt the reason why Tinder is so popular, addictive, and ultimately insidious.
Tinder  relationships  attraction  socialclass  semiotics  racism  onlinedating  Buzzfeed  2014 
september 2014 by inspiral
More Americans slip out of middle class | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram
Studies confirm the downward mobility as years of job losses, higher costs, vanishing pay raises and other factors take a toll.
middleclass  socialclass  socialmobility  decline  USA  PortlandPressHerald  2014 
april 2014 by inspiral
Your Ancestors, Your Fate -
Inequality of income and wealth has risen in America since the 1970s, yet a large-scale research study recently found that social mobility hadn’t changed much during that time. How can that be?
GregoryClark  socialmobility  socialclass  inequality  opportunity  research  NYTimes  2014 
march 2014 by inspiral

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