“Living for Yourself”

For my first interview, I discussed the nature of capitalism with my roommate, SM.  A 22-year-old white male with two college educated parents, I was interested to see how similar SM’s perspective on capitalism would be to my own.  SM identifies as relatively wealthy, middle class, and he grew up in a diverse neighborhood in Northern Virginia.  His father is wealthy, and according to SM, worked his way up to become a senior administrator in a major bank.  His uncle also owns a small business.

When I asked SM to define capitalism, he defined an economic system that provides for “the means to pave your own way and choose what it is you want to do.”  He elaborated that capitalism enables people to have the opportunity to do what they want to do in life – to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and pave their way toward economic independence.

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