There is a new aristocracy in America, Matthew Stewart writes in our June cover story—and if you’re reading The Atlantic, he continues, there’s a good chance you’re part of it. This group, which he dubs the “9.9 percent,” isn’t conspicuous about their wealth—they’re “a well-behaved, flannel-suited crowd of lawyers, doctors, dentists, mid-level investment bankers, M.B.A.s with assorted job titles, and assorted other professionals”—but they are deeply privileged, with access to opportunities that set them apart from the rest of America. For today’s issue, I talked to David Somerville and Paul Spella, creative directors at The Atlantic, about the challenges of designing art for a story that implicates much of our readership, and their decision to put a white, blonde-haired, blue-eyed baby on the cover—an infant that, in her age cohort, according to recent census estimates, is now part of a racial and ethnic minority.
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