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From the color of rugged denim and chambray work shirts often worn by manual workers, as opposed to the white dress shirts typically worn by professionals and clerical workers.


blue-collar (comparative more blue-collar, superlative most blue-collar)

  1. Working class; engaged or trained in essentially manual labor.
    Blue-collar workers represent a diminishing segment of society.
    • 2013 February 14, Scott Tobias, “Film: Reviews: A Good Day To Die Hard”, in The Onion AV Club[1]:
      The blue-collar, vulnerable McClane of Die Hard wouldn’t even recognize the bulletproof, catchphrase-spouting superhero he’s become in the sequels.
  2. Pertaining to the culture of blue-collar workers.
    Even as a tenured professor, she remained proud of her blue-collar values.

Related terms[edit]