Life in the USA: The Complete Guide for Immigrants and Americans: "Artists and Intellectuals
Artists and intellectuals have always been out of the American mainstream. Some artists, intellectuals or university academics may seem to lead typically middle class lives, but they are always at least a little different in the eyes of most other Americans of all classes. It is very difficult to make a living in the visual or performing arts in the United States. Under some highly controversial programs, federal, state and local government do help some artists, but, for the most part, artists have to depend on the free market, which is often unkind to them. Many artists and performers are forced to take unrelated jobs to pay their bills. Arts-oriented cities such as New York and Los Angeles are filled with young people in the theater, dance, music or the visual arts who work as waiters or waitresses. "