Income Inequality: 'The Most Profound Change In American Society In Your Lifetime'

09/07/2010 11:28 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Timothy Noah Slate Magazine

In 1915, a statistician at the University of Wisconsin named Willford I. King published The Wealth and Income of the People of the United States, the most comprehensive study of its kind to date. The United States was displacing Great Britain as the world's wealthiest nation, but detailed information about its economy was not yet readily available; the federal government wouldn't start collecting such data in any systematic way until the 1930s. One of King's purposes was to reassure the public that all Americans were sharing in the country's newfound wealth.

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