The Inner Circle is a fictional study of how profound differences in human character directly relate to our nation's contemporary culture, the intense division of thinking, the change in the middle class, and the movement of wealth to a select few. The lives that are portrayed herethe characters, the thought processes, and the personal valuesare of two sharply differing groups of people. In their ethical, intellectual, and humane daily pursuit of their personal and professional lives, the Edwards and O'Hara families find themselves confronted by the narcissism, arrogance, pretentiousness, and power of the Van Guilder and Maxwell families. Within the character of the Edwards and O'Hara families, there is respect for science and objective analysis, for ethnic diversity, empathy for those less fortunate, and knowledge of the need for change in a country facing desperate challenges. In contrast, the Van Guilder and Maxwell families, along with their inner circle of powerful friends at exclusive Hickory Hill Country Club, devote their efforts to the perpetuation of a dominant and ruling wealthy entitled-elite class. Their every thought and word supports this distinction without regard for the country's pressing problems or the less fortunate. The vastly different thought processes and values of these two groups can only result in open conflict in any interactionand the forthcoming clash will be considerable.