Charting The Great Divergence


The ‘Great Divergence’ is a nod to Timothy Noah’s very accessible and well-written book from 2012 on income inequality. Specifically, it’s about the divergence of income growth claimed by the ~1 percent of earners versus everyone else in the last thirty years or so.

This is typically represented in chart form, like this one from the gurus at the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities (from their excellent primer on the subject):

CBPP Income Gains Chart

This is a chart from economics professor Pavlina Tcherneva, which made the rounds on Twitter yesterday and the blogstoday, showing much the same phenomenon except it highlights U.S. income captured by the top 10 percent versus everyone else during economic expansions since 1943. As she explains in the tweet, “The WAY we grow in the US brings more #inequality. Distribution of income during expansions (trough-to-peak).”

Pavlina Income ChartData-wrangling aside (as Kevin Drum notes in his post on the same…

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