I haven’t talked much to either of my parents about their class backgrounds. Both of my parents are from Uganda, and attended university outside of the United States before moving here, where they met in California. From her LinkedIn, I think my mom is from an economically comfortable and large family in Kampala. Most of the family I know is on her side; her mother has (I think) 8 children, of which at least 3 or 4 also immigrated to the US. She earned a law degree from Makerere University. From an email I sent asking, my dad is from a two-family village in the southern part of the country. He wrote: “No power, water, roads, cars etc for the most, but we were some of the better-off families, dad had a bicycle. We also grew coffee, corn, cotton and had a sizable banana plantation; bananas with some vegetables are a stable food in this part of the country.” He went to primary and secondary school, wearing shoes for the first time as a teenager, and left the country when it was headed by Idi Amin in the late ’70s. He was the only black student in the engineering program at the university he eventually attended in the United Kingdom.
In the US, our family (me, my brother, my parents) moved around a bit before settling in Denver, where my brother and I finished middle and high school, my mom attended community and online college to try and get better credentials for a better nursing job, and my dad worked until he was deported, around the end of my first year attending one of the most expensive universities in the country. I was mostly on scholarships; from some rough calculations I did a while ago, of the ~$220,000 cost for 4 years me and my dad paid less than $10,000 (though I left with about $12,000 in loans). I currently live in New York City, am unemployed, and mostly hang out with other twenty-something college graduates who are close to or part of a general cultural elite. My brother went to a public university in Colorado for less than a week before dropping out. He’s living somewhere around LA with my aunt (my dad’s younger sister), last time I checked. He has a fucking great Tumblr.