Nancy Isenberg, "White Trash"
When entrepreneurs in Elizabethan England looked to the New World, they saw America as a land of waste land that was not productive -- but could be the place to offload the poor, idle, diseased and the children of beggars, all seen as human waste. That’s how historian Nancy Isenberg begins her history of class in America -- generation after generation of underclass viewed by society and government as disposable. In her book “White Trash,” Isenberg argues that far from the class-less society Americans claim, the United States always has enforced a class structure and disdained those at the bottom. We’ll ask Isenberg whether her focus on class ignores the bigotry of race … and how the ideas of “White Trash” show up in politics today.