In this text author William Ming Liu presents theory and research on the impact of classism and social class on mental health. He provides an original framework—the Social Class Worldview Model—for exploring each person’s individual and subjective life experiences. These experiences form a perspective that is unique to the individual. The author then helps the reader integrate this realization into the study of poverty, economic inequality, wealth, and the often overlooked implications of greed, materialism, and consumerism for a more complete understanding of social class and classism. Liu’s original Social Class Worldview Model–Revised provides a theoretical framework for integrating each individual’s reaction to social class and classism experiences and addressing that worldview within counseling and psychology work. Readers receive guidance in additional ways to act as advocates for their clients—regardless of affluence—through a study of privilege, social justice, empowerment, and competence.



On many Saturday mornings, my wife, 2-year-old daughter, and I visit a small boutique bakery. The bakery is in a historic part of town, and if you did not know of the bakery, you might easily miss it. It is a source of pride for most middle- and upper-class people to know about it, talk about it, and on occasion, refer people to it. The bakery is not large, and the owner has placed a small table and chairs to accommodate the many children visiting the bakery.

One Saturday, my daughter was sitting at the table eating a cookie when a mother and daughter came in. The girl was probably 4 or 5 years old and was carrying a doll. When the girl sat down ...

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