Ananász utca: the stories of the super-rich, from the succession to the best-selling book

“I’m 43, on the border between Generation X and Millennial, and my attitude has always been: the money looks cool, I really want some! It’s literally unscrutinized,” Jackson admits with breezy honesty. “Still, if you were in your 20s now and you had a trust fund, you’d probably have complicated feelings about it. So I wanted to write about generational wealth, from a generational perspective.”

Jackson’s inspiration was literally on his doorstep: living on Pineapple Street in Brooklyn Heights—albeit in a modest apartment—he snooped on the more wealthy neighbors. “I always walked past the apartment with these giant bay windows and a piano and those big Chinese urns — like, who lives there?”

In fact, Jackson was in a good position to imagine: Although he was from middle-class, small-town Massachusetts, when he moved to New York, he threw himself into a world of publishing parties and fancy lunches and shared apartments. with three investment bankers. Nowadays, she gets an insight into her neighbors through her children’s kindergarten: they recently held a fundraiser, where one of the prizes was a child-sized Tesla. Let’s say he took notes.

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And this is surely a key element of the appeal of stories about the mega-rich: the joy of snooping. Whether we aspire to extreme wealth—or are repelled by it—many of us can’t resist the view of excess—or studiously understated “quiet luxury.”

Narratives of rich people

The appeal of narratives about rich people is, at its core, the possibility of pure, empty fantasy—an escape in imagining what it would be like to be stinking rich. There’s a reason so many romance novels and blockbuster bonksbusters feature ridiculously well-off heroes: why not dream of not only a lover, but luxury as well?

But there is something else especially it is tempting to glimpse an elite world filled with mysterious codes or strict hierarchies. Most of Pineapple Street is spent watching an outsider, Sasha, marry into the family and experience “class shame” for doing things wrong. Jackson has a theory about why we care about etiquette: “I think we secretly believe that we’re going to be millionaires one day, and so we should probably learn the codes to be ready. It’s a crazy idea, it’s a deep part of our psyche.”

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Readers have long relished the opportunity to get inside information on the rules and ruthlessness of high society, the machinations of who’s in or out, up or down. Social engagement becomes a game (one we might secretly think we could win if only we had the chance). The appetite for such drama is growing everywhere from reality shows like Real Housewives or Below Deck, Jane Austen and Edith Wharton, Downton Abbey, Bridgerton and Queen Charlotte.