I remember reading The Levittowners [Herbert J. Gans’ account of an early Long Island cookie-cutter suburb] and wondering “Why are we reading this in political science?” I came in many ways very naïve, things like class, I just really wasn’t sensitive to, and of course The Levittowners is all about class, at least the way he used it, sensitizing you to how class affects your fundamental perspective on things like education. It was a real eye-opener to see the world that way. People having different perspectives based on things like class. It sounds so elementary, but if you’re a freshman coming from a fairly homogenous secondary education it really opens new perspectives. And it looked at the differences between lower middle class and working class values and how they perceived the value of their job. What their attitudes are toward education, which was always a fundamental interest of his. Was it utilitarian or was it something else? And of course many of the parents of the people in the class, many of them may have viewed it, Williams is utilitarian, but in a different way than The Levittowners. You know, broader horizons, bigger ambitions for their kids. I’d read something like The Levittowners, and it was just sort of flat and mundane. I couldn’t understand why we were reading it and after one class working it you just come over with a totally different perspective, you know, what was buried in that text. It was a very humbling experience because you realize that you just sort of missed the whole point.