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British Journal of Sociology

Impact factor: 1.684 5-Year impact factor: 2.194 Print ISSN: 0007-1315 Publisher: Wiley Blackwell (Blackwell Publishing)

Subject: Sociology

Most recent papers:

  • The discreet charm of the children of the bourgeoisie: economic capital and its symbolic expressions at an elite business school.
    Vegard Jarness, Willy Pedersen, Magne Paalgard Flemmen.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 28, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract We address a largely neglected issue in contemporary research on cultural class divisions: economic capital and its associated lifestyles and symbolic expressions. Using qualitative interviews, we explore how adolescents from wealthy elite backgrounds, namely students at Oslo Commerce School (OCS), traditionally one of the most prestigious upper‐secondary schools in Norway, demarcate themselves symbolically from others. They draw symbolic boundaries against students at other elite schools in Oslo, more characterized by backgrounds with high cultural capital, accusing them of mimicking a ‘hipster’ style. Within the OCS student body, we describe identity work centring on styles of material consumption and bodily distinctions. The most salient dividing line is between those who manage to master a ‘natural’ style, where expensive clothes and the desired bodily attributes are displayed discreetly, and those who are ‘trying too hard’ and thus marked by the stigma of effort. We also show some interesting intersections between class and gender: girls aspiring to the economic elite obey the ‘rules of the game’ by exercising extensive control over their bodies and adhering to demanding bodily norms for their weight and slimness. Such rules are less evident among the boys, where a lack of discipline, unruliness, hard partying and even fighting constitute parts of the lifestyle valued. This article contributes to the field of cultural stratification, highlighting the importance of the ‘hows’ of material consumption when expressing elite distinction. It also adds new insight to the research field of elite education by showing how a mastery of ‘high‐end’ consumer culture is involved in fostering favourable dispositions at elite schools. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 28, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12625   open full text
  • Agency of internal transnationalism in social memory.
    Nelly Bekus.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The article examines the limitations of methodological nationalism in the studies of social memory through a case study of memory of Stalinist repression in Belarus. It analyses how various social agencies – national and local activists, religious organisations, and international foundations – use the memory of repression for constructing post‐Soviet Belarusian identity by embedding their national representations in larger transnational frameworks. Drawing on the concept of ‘internal globalisation’, this article develops the idea of ‘internal transnationalism’ that suggests the importance of wider transnational configurations for the definition of nation. Internalized transnationalism does not make a national memory concept less nation‐centred, but it affects the choice of its cultural, political and civilizational framing. In contrast to methodological cosmopolitanism that implies rediscovering of the national as an internalized global, methodological transnationalism emphasizes the multiplicity of co‐existing transnational networks that can be invoked by social actors in their national mnemonic agenda. Using the case of the Kurapaty memorial site the article analyses how multiple framings of memory representations – the Belarusian national memory, liberal anti‐communist memory, contesting memories, such as Polish, Baltic and Jewish – compete and juxtapose in the space of social memory of political repression. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12620   open full text
  • A dynamic and multifunctional account of middle‐range theories.
    Tuukka Kaidesoja.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article develops a novel account of middle‐range theories for combining theoretical and empirical analysis in explanatory sociology. I first revisit Robert K. Merton’s original ideas on middle‐range theories and identify a tension between his developmental approach to middle‐range theorizing that recognizes multiple functions of theories in sociological research and his static definition of the concept of middle‐range theory that focuses only on empirical testing of theories. Drawing on Merton's ideas on theorizing and recent discussions on mechanism‐based explanations, I argue that this tension can be resolved by decomposing a middle‐range theory into three interrelated and evolving components that perform different functions in sociological research: (i) a conceptual framework about social phenomena that is a set of interrelated concepts that evolve in close connection with empirical analysis; (ii) a mechanism schema that is an abstract and incomplete description of a social mechanism; and (iii) a cluster of all mechanism‐based explanations of social phenomena that are based on the particular mechanism schema. I show how these components develop over time and how they serve different functions in sociological theorizing and research. Finally, I illustrate these ideas by discussing Merton’s theory of the Matthew effect in science and its more recent applications in sociology. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12621   open full text
  • Class and status: on the misconstrual of the conceptual distinction and a neo‐Bourdieusian alternative.
    Magne Paalgard Flemmen, Vegard Jarness, Lennart Rosenlund.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 11, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract In this article, we address the classical debate about the relationship between the economic and cultural aspects of social stratification, typically cast in terms of Weber’s distinction between class and status. We discuss in particular Chan and Goldthorpe’s influential, yet largely unchallenged, attempt to reinstate a strict version of the class‐status distinction, mounted as an attack on ‘Bourdieusian’ accounts. We argue that this is unconvincing in two respects: There are fundamental problems with their conceptualization of status, producing a peculiar account where one expression of status honour explains the other; in addition, their portrayal of the Bourdieusian approach as one‐dimensional is highly questionable. In contradiction of a reading of Bourdieu as discarding the class‐status distinction, we develop an alternative, neo‐Bourdieusian account that recognizes class and status as distinct aspects of stratification, thereby allowing for a subtle analysis of their empirical entwinement. The fruitfulness of this approach is demonstrated by analysing the homology between the space of lifestyles and the social space through Multiple Correspondence Analysis of unusually rich data about lifestyles. Importantly, we highlight the relative autonomy of these spaces: Although they exhibit a similar structure, they do not overlap completely. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12508   open full text
  • The collective/affective practice of cancer survivorship.
    Alex Broom, Katherine Kenny, Emma Kirby, Zarnie Lwin.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 08, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Whether within an atmosphere of hope, or amidst relations of fear, the emotions of cancer are unavoidably collectively produced. Yet persistent individualistic paradigms continue to obscure how the emotions of cancer operate relationally – between bodies, subjects, discourses, and practices – and are intertwined with circulating beliefs, cultural desires, and various forms of normativity. Drawing on interviews with 80 people living with cancer in Australia, this paper illustrates why recognition of the collective enterprise of survivorship – and the collective production of emotion, more generally – is important in light of persistent, culturally dominant conceptions of the individual patient as the primary ‘afflicted', ‘feeling', and ‘treated' subject. Building on previous work on affective relations and moral framings, we posit that the collective affects of survivorship inflect what people living with cancer can, and should, feel. We highlight how such things as hope, resignation, optimism, and dread are ‘products' of the collective affects of cancer, with implications for how survivorship is lived, felt, and done. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12616   open full text
  • Educational assortative mating: a micro‐educational approach.
    Stefan B. Andrade, Jens‐Peter Thomsen.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 08, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article presents a new way of analysing educational assortative mating patterns, using a detailed ‘micro‐educational’ classification capturing both hierarchical and horizontal forms of educational differentiation. Taking advantage of rich Danish population data, we apply log‐linear models that include four ways of measuring educational homogamy patterns: (a) by returns to education, (b) by macro‐education (five aggregated levels), (c) by field of study (16 categories), and (d) by a disaggregated micro‐educational classification, combining levels and fields of study (54 groups). Our results show declines in educational homogamy from 1984 to 2013, but the odds ratios of being educationally homogamous at the university college and university levels remain of substantial magnitude, by both the macro‐ and micro‐educational measures. The micro‐educational classification outperforms all other measures in explaining the associations in the homogamy tables. The income measure (‘returns to education’) does a particularly poor job of explaining homogamy patterns from 1984 to 2013. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12488   open full text
  • Group formation, styles, and grammars of commonality in local activism.
    Eeva Luhtakallio.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 08, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article argues that in order to analyse democracy as a pattern constantly processed in a given society, it is useful to look at activist groups’ agenda setting and recruitment principles, group bonds and boundaries, and how these actions direct and influence ways of creating the common. Based on an ethnographic study on bicycle activism in Helsinki, Finland, it describes a local critical mass movement that was successful in promoting a bicycle friendly and sustainable city, yet dissolved due to lack of people involved, and the bicycle demonstrations stopped at a moment of high public interest. This empirical puzzle is addressed by combining three theoretical perspectives: Kathleen Blee’s work on path dependencies in nascent activist groups; Nina Eliasoph and Paul Lichterman’s work on group styles, and Laurent Thévenot’s work on the grammars of commonality. These theoretical tools help understand the sense of what is deemed possible, desirable and feasible in activist groups, and the consequences thereof to social movement ‘success’ and ‘failure’. The article claims that everyday practices and interaction are crucial in understanding the ‘democratic effects’ of social movements. It concludes that following specific processes of politicization and their conditionings in activist groups provides keys to understanding contextual differences in democracies without resorting to methodological nationalism or to exaggerated global isomorphism, and thus may contribute to figuring out how to succeed global action plans over wicked, pressing problems like global warming. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12606   open full text
  • Money as a social relation beyond the state: a contribution to the institutionalist approach based on the Argentinian trueque.
    Hadrien Saiag.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 08, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper provides a contribution to the institutionalist approach to money through ethnographic research carried out in two local currency systems in Argentina (known as trueque). It argues that Argentinian local currencies must be considered as monies in their own right even if they differ from state and bank issued currencies, because they can be understood as systems of evaluation and settlement of debts denominated in a specific unit of account (the crédito). Money is said to be an ambivalent social relation because in the two cases studied it mediates very different dynamics, exacerbating inequality in one context and promoting collective emancipation in another. This difference is due to the kind of political communities that the crédito tends to forge. In both Rosario and Poriajhu, the political community is defined by a set of values that legitimizes ongoing monetary practices and institutions rather than the State’s coercion. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    November 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12610   open full text
  • Political entrepreneurship in the field of Māori sovereignty in Aotearoa New Zealand.
    Thomas O’Brien.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 30, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Individual actors have the potential to shape political outcomes through creative use of opportunities. Political entrepreneurship identifies how such actors recognize and exploit opportunities, for personal or collective gain. The existing literature focuses on individuals operating within institutional settings, with less attention paid to other types of actors. In this article, I argue for an expansion of the political entrepreneurship framework, by considering individuals in the electoral and protest arenas. An examination of the field of Māori sovereignty, or tino rangatiratanga, in Aotearoa New Zealand allows exploration of prominent actors’ innovative strategies and practices. The findings highlight the actors’ reliance on identity in mobilizing support within the community, to press claims. Broadening the application of political entrepreneurship demonstrates the roles of social, cultural and political capital in influencing outcomes, by identifying opportunities available to individuals embedded in the community and according to the context of the arena. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 30, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12611   open full text
  • How states tighten control: a field theory perspective on journalism in contemporary Crimea.
    Olga Zeveleva.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 26, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article contributes to denationalizing Bourdieu’s field theory by analysing the relationship between a regional news media field, the state and transnational influences. The article seeks to answer the question of how a state can impose limits on the autonomy of the news media field during political transition. Field theory is applied to changes that have taken place in Crimean news media since Russia’s annexation of the peninsula in 2014. Drawing on narrative interviews with journalists who worked in Crimea in 2012–17, expert interviews, and secondary sources, I demonstrate how Crimea’s news media field went from being dominated by varied Ukrainian private news media owners to becoming dominated by the Russian state. I show that states can employ direct measures such as anti‐press violence and ownership appropriation of news media outlets in order to increase concentration of state media ownership. In addition, states can reallocate capital in the news media field, disenfranchising some journalists and outlets while favouring others. The adaptive strategies of individual journalists, who, upon losing capital, can sometimes relocate or leave their jobs, also changes the composition of news media fields. Departing from a common view of social spaces as bounded within nation‐states, I examine how the news media field of Crimea has been shaped by both transnational influences, and by the direct imposition of Russian state power through a reconstitution of national borders. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 26, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12615   open full text
  • Investigative ignorance in international investigations: how United Nations Panels of Experts create new relations of power by seeking information.
    Aurel Niederberger.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 25, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract How do political investigations affect relations of power? Earlier studies have focused on the empowering effects of political knowledge – in contrast, I analyse how the pursuit of such knowledge makes the investigator dependent on others. I hypothesize that where the will to know empowers others, ignorance becomes a strategic alternative. This mechanism should play out strongly at the intersection of global governance and local political crises: here, global governance actors lack knowledge, investigations often constitute the first direct interaction between actors from both sides, and solidification of power (instead of empowering others) should be a central interest of global governance actors. I first explore the hypothesized mechanisms theoretically and develop a framework to analyse dependencies between investigators and their interlocutors. This framework then facilitates a within‐case comparison of investigative approaches of United Nations Panels of Experts. The results support and elucidate the hypothesized mechanisms. The study shows how the analysis of social interaction can create new views of the much‐studied relationship between knowledge and power. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 25, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12603   open full text
  • Groups and individuals: conformity and diversity in the performance of gendered identities.
    Robert Evans, Harry Collins, Martin Weinel, Jennifer Lyttleton‐Smith, Hannah O'Mahoney, Willow Leonard‐Clarke.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 23, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The nature and role of social groups is a central tension in sociology. On the one hand, the idea of a group enables sociologists to locate and describe individuals in terms of characteristics that are shared with others. On the other, emphasizing the fluidity of categories such as gender or ethnicity undermines their legitimacy as ways of classifying people and, by extension, the legitimacy of categorization as a goal of sociological research. In this paper, we use a new research method known as the Imitation Game to defend the social group as a sociological concept. We show that, despite the diversity of practices that may be consistent with self‐identified membership of a group, there are also shared normative expectations – typically narrower in nature than the diversity displayed by individual group members – that shape the ways in which category membership can be discussed with, and performed to, others. Two claims follow from this. First, the Imitation Game provides a way of simultaneously revealing both the diversity and ‘groupishness’ of social groups. Second, that the social group, in the quasi‐Durkheimian sense of something that transcends the individual, remains an important concept for sociology. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 23, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12507   open full text
  • Issue Information.

    British Journal of Sociology. October 22, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 799-824, September 2018.
    October 22, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12614   open full text
  • Obituary for Robert Fine – 1945‐2018.
    Lydia Morris.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 22, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 878-880, September 2018.
    October 22, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12609   open full text
  • The social life of DNA: racial reconciliation and institutional morality after the genome.
    Alondra Nelson.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This 2017 British Journal of Sociology Lecture builds upon ideas developed in The Social Life of DNA: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation after the Genome (Nelson 2016). I argue that one of the more significant developments of the postgenomic era is the circulation of DNA analysis outside of the life sciences, especially commercial applications such as direct‐to‐consumer genealogical testing. These tests are increasingly taken up in ‘reconciliation projects’ – endeavours in which DNA analysis is put to the use of repairing the past, including a recently launched attempt in the United States to locate descendants of enslaved persons sold by the Jesuit stewards of Georgetown College in order to bolster that institution’s finances. With this reconciliation project, genetic genealogy has become a vehicle for a form of social repair, and most particularly, the reuniting of ‘lost’ kin. This use of genetic genealogy takes place against the backdrop of an expanding, national inquiry into ties between education and slavery. In the process, the legacy of racial slavery is rendered both contemporary and proximate, despite a ‘colour‐blind’ racial project that aims to negate the significance of this history and its coeval development with US higher education. Elite educational institutions such as Georgetown that elect to excavate these histories are soon after faced with the choice of how to respond, on campus and beyond, to revelations of entanglements between edification and bondage. However imperfectly, colleges and universities are among the few institutional settings where the contested issue of structural racism (and remedies to it) may be aired. It is in these fraught debates that the exercise of ‘institutional morality’ can take shape; organizations engage in practices that articulate institutional values and are faced with a choice of symbolic and distributional responses. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 522-537, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12607   open full text
  • Childcare by grandparents in married and cohabiting couples: evidence from Italy.
    Silvia Meggiolaro.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The process of union formation and the context of childrearing have profoundly changed with the spread of cohabitation in the last few decades. It is only recently that some attention has been paid to the implications of these changes for family ties. This study considers, with reference to Italy, a specific relationship between individuals in couples and their family of origin – childcare by grandparents. The aim of the paper is twofold. First, we investigate whether children of cohabiting couples are cared for by their grandparents to a lower extent compared to children of married couples. Second, the current study examines whether potential differences decrease over time. The data used are from two rounds of cross‐sectional and nationally representative survey conducted in Italy in 2003 and in 2009. Our results show that in 2003 both in the provision and the intensity of grandparents’ childcare, children of cohabiting parents were less likely to have their grandparents involved than children of married parents. However, the differences between marriages and cohabitations disappear in recent years. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 580-600, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12292   open full text
  • Tax policy and tax protest in 20 rich democracies, 1980–2010.
    Isaac William Martin, Nadav Gabay.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Why are some policies protested more than others? New data on protest against eight categories of taxation in twenty rich democracies from 1980 to 2010 reveal that economically and socially concentrated taxes are protested most, whereas taxes that confer entitlement to benefits are protested least. Other features of policy design often thought to affect the salience or visibility of costs are unimportant for explaining the frequency of protest. These findings overturn a folk theory that political sociology has inherited from classical political economy; clarify the conditions under which policy threats provoke protest; and shed light on how welfare states persist. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 647-669, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12290   open full text
  • From preparedness to risk: from the singular risk of nuclear war to the plurality of all hazards.
    Joe Deville, Michael Guggenheim.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Debates on risk have largely assumed risk to be the outcome of calculative practices. There is a related assumption that risk objects come only in one form, and that the reason not everything can be transformed into a risk is because of the difficulties in calculating and creating universal quantitative comparisons. In this article, building on recent studies of preparedness that have broadened understandings of risk, we provide an analysis of how preparedness measures might themselves produce risk, in particular through risk's durable instantiation, or what we call ‘concretization’. Our empirical focus is on how government agencies in two countries shifted their attention from the risk of nuclear attack during the Cold War to an all hazards approach to preparedness. Comparing the mid‐ to late‐twentieth century histories of the UK and Switzerland, we show that both countries shifted from focusing from a single risk to plural risks. This shift cannot be explained by a change in prevailing calculative practices, or by the fact that the risks changed historically. Instead, it is driven by historically specific changes in how risks are produced and reproduced in relation to how materializations of risk operate over time. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 799-824, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12291   open full text
  • Re‐making the global economy of knowledge: do new fields of research change the structure of North–South relations?
    Raewyn Connell, Rebecca Pearse, Fran Collyer, João Maia, Robert Morrell.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract How is global‐North predominance in the making of organized knowledge affected by the rise of new domains of research? This question is examined empirically in three interdisciplinary areas – climate change, HIV‐AIDS, and gender studies – through interviews with 70 researchers in Southern‐tier countries Brazil, South Africa and Australia. The study found that the centrality of the North was reinstituted as these domains came into existence, through resource inequalities, workforce mechanisms, and intellectual framing. Yet there are tensions in the global economy of knowledge, around workforce formation, hierarchies of disciplines, neoliberal management strategies, and mismatches with social need. Intellectual workers in the Southern tier have built significant research centres, workforces and some distinctive knowledge projects. These create wider possibilities of change in the global structure of organized knowledge production. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 738-757, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12294   open full text
  • Postmaterialism and young people's political participation in a time of austerity.
    Matt Henn, Ben Oldfield, James Hart.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Recent trends suggest that young people in Britain are refraining from engaging in formal political processes. At the same time, they are increasingly expressing support for, and turning toward, a new and diverse range of non‐institutionalized forms of political action in order to actualize their interests. Using Inglehart's ideas on postmaterialism, we consider whether this apparent rejection of mainstream politics in favour of less conventional – and sometimes radical – forms of political action is changing over time in Britain, reflecting fluctuating economic conditions witnessed over the last two decades. We do this by comparing results from surveys of British 18 year olds conducted in 2002 during an era of relative global prosperity, and then in 2011 at the height of the current global crisis. The findings suggest that British young postmaterialists are considerably more likely than materialists to participate in and support both institutionalized and non‐institutionalized forms of political action. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 712-737, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12309   open full text
  • Institutional change and parental compensation in intergenerational attainment.
    Heta Pöyliö, Jani Erola, Elina Kilpi‐Jakonen.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Previous research has shown how institutional changes, such as educational expansion, have weakened parental influence on educational attainment. We extend this analysis to occupational attainment and put forth a parental compensation hypothesis: as the origin‐education (OE) association weakens, parents act to compensate for this in order to maintain their influence on the child's occupational attainment. We should see this as a strengthened origin‐destination association net of education (net OD). Further, we study whether these compensatory actions are triggered by changes in educational institutions and whether the institutional changes that reduce educational inequality are the same ones that prompt parental compensation. We have linked data from five waves of the European Social Survey (2002–10) with data on educational institutions matched to birth cohorts born 1941–80 in 25 countries. We find weakened OE and strengthened net OD associations, supporting our parental compensation hypothesis. Multilevel mixed effects regression analyses reveal that reforms lengthening compulsory education, and the increased access to and the attainment of higher education have had a positive influence on parental compensation. As a conclusion, a later school leaving age seems to secure increased parental influence on children's occupational attainment, while parents seem to have reacted to a lesser extent on the changes in higher education. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 601-625, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12293   open full text
  • Small‐p politics: how pleasurable, convivial and pragmatic political ideals influence engagement in eat‐local initiatives.
    Emily Huddart Kennedy, Josée Johnston, John R. Parkins.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Non‐confrontational engagement practices like ethical consumption are a popular form of everyday politics. Existing research into these practices offers positive evaluations (highlighting the value of everyday engagement in public life) and critical perspectives (questioning whether myriad small acts can address structural barriers to equity and sustainability). Meanwhile, less emphasis has been placed on understanding the underlying ideals and motivations for political action that seeks to avoid traditional politics. In order to advance such understanding, this case study uses participant observation and semi‐structured interviews with 57 individuals whose daily paid or unpaid leadership roles shape eat‐local initiatives. We find that in the local food realm, participants idealize pleasurable, convivial and pragmatic engagement and these ideals culminate in a particular form of everyday action we term ‘small‐p politics’. The paper offers a theoretically and empirically informed investigation of non‐traditional political engagement in eat‐local movements, concluding that it emerges from a site where: (a) cultural change is prioritized above contentious politics; (b) rejecting traditional political activity is linked with achieving tangible outcomes; and (c) consumers are deemed the ideal agents of change. Non‐traditional politics play a prominent role in the landscape of contemporary civic engagement. This research advances our existing knowledge of such practices by providing a thick description of the political ideals that endorse consumption‐based approaches to change in the realm of local food. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 670-690, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12298   open full text
  • ‘Luck, chance, and happenstance? Perceptions of success and failure amongst fixed‐term academic staff in UK higher education’.
    Vik Loveday.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract What does it mean to attribute success to ‘luck’, but failure to personal deficiency? In 2015/16, more than 34 per cent of academic employees in UK higher education institutions were employed on temporary contracts, and the sector itself has undergone a substantial transformation in recent years in terms of expansion, measurement, and marketization. Based on two waves of interviews conducted with fixed‐term academic employees at different career stages, the article explores the narrativization of success and failure amongst staff working at the ‘sharp end’ of the so‐called neoliberal academy. Arguing that precarious employment situations precipitate the feeling of being ‘out of control’, the majority of the participants’ narratives were characterized by a distinct lack of agency. The paper explores the recourse to notions of chance and the consolidation of ‘luck’ as an explanatory factor in accounting for why good things happen; however, in tandem with this inclination is the tendency to individualize failure when expectations have been thwarted. While accounts of fixed‐term work are suffused with notions of chance and fortune, ‘luck’ remains an under‐researched concept within sociology. The article thus concludes by considering what the analysis of ‘luck’ might offer for a fuller, politicized understanding of processes at work in the contemporary academy. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 758-775, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12307   open full text
  • Cultures of choice: towards a sociology of choice as a cultural phenomenon.
    Ori Schwarz.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The article explores different ways to conceptualize the relationship between choice and culture. These two notions are often constructed as opposites: while sociologies of modernization (such as Giddens’) portray a shift from cultural traditions to culturally disembedded choice, dispositional sociologies (such as Bourdieu's) uncover cultural determination as the hidden truth behind apparent choice. However, choice may be real and cultural simultaneously. Culture moulds choice not only by inculcating dispositions or shaping repertoires of alternatives, but also by offering culturally specific choice practices, ways of choosing embedded in meaning, normativity, and materiality; and by shaping attributions of choice in everyday life. By bringing together insights from rival schools, I portray an outline for a comparative cultural sociology of choice, and demonstrate its purchase while discussing the digitalization of choice; and cultural logics that shape choice attribution in ways opposing neoliberal trends. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 845-864, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12305   open full text
  • The making of a moral economy: women's views of monetary transactions in an ‘egg sharing for research’ scheme.
    Erica Haimes, Robin Williams.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract There are growing debates about the appropriateness of offering money in exchange for the provision of bodily materials for clinical treatment and research. The bioethics literature and many practice guidelines have generally been opposed to such entanglement, depicting the use of money as contaminating, creating undue inducement, exploitation and commodification of the human body. However, two elements have been missing from these debates: (i) the perspectives of those people providing bodily materials when money is offered; and (ii) systematic empirical engagement with the notion of ‘money’ itself. This article seeks to fill those gaps in knowledge by providing detailed insights from a project investigating the views and experiences of women who volunteered to provide eggs for research in exchange for reduced fees for fertility treatment. Analysis of 29 semi‐structured interviews reveals multiple ways in which volunteers reason through the involvement of ‘money’ in this domain and shows how their accounts diverge from pessimistic understandings of the role of monies in everyday life. When volunteers speak in detail about the monetary aspects of their participation they draw major, recurring, distinctions in five overlapping areas: their depiction of the monetized world of fertility treatment; their views of the different forms that money can take; a distancing of their actions from their understandings of how markets and commodities work; their location of the transactions within a particular clinic, and the ongoing importance of their eggs, post‐transaction. This article: (i) responds to calls for concrete case studies to assist understandings of the inter‐relationships of money and specific aspects of social life; (ii) adds to the sociology of money literature by providing empirical insights into how notions of money are deployed; (iii) presents much‐needed perspectives from providers of bodily materials; and (iv) contributes to ongoing conversations between bioethics and sociology. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 825-844, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12297   open full text
  • Transitional justice as social control: political transitions, human rights norms and the reclassification of the past.
    Ron Dudai.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article offers an interpretation of transitional justice policies – the efforts of post‐conflict and post‐dictatorship societies to address the legacy of past abuses – as a form of social control. While transitional justice is commonly conceptualized as responding to a core problem of impunity, this article argues that such formulation is too narrow and leads to lack of coherence in the analysis of the diverse array of transitional mechanisms, which include among others trials, truth commissions, reparations for victims and apologies. Building on the work of Stanley Cohen, the article contends that the core transitional problem is the denial of human rights violations, and consequently that the common purpose of all transitional justice mechanisms is to reclassify the past: redefining as deviant some acts and individuals which prior to the transition were considered ‘normal’. The article identifies and analyses three themes in the application of a social control framework to transitional justice: (1) truth, memory and retroactive social control, pertains to the way truth‐seeking transitional justice mechanisms reclassify past events by engaging in social control of and through memory; (2) censure, celebration and transitional social control refers to the reclassification of categories of individuals through expressions of both social disapproval and praise; and (3) civil society and social control from below concerns the role of social movements, organizations and groups as informal agents of social control during transitions. The concluding section recaps and briefly explores the concept of ‘good moral panic’ in the context of political transitions. While the concept of social control tends to have negative connotations for critical sociologists, this work suggests that efforts to categorize, punish and disapprove certain behaviours as deviant may not only be viewed as supporting a conservative status‐quo, but also as promoting fledging human rights norms. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 691-711, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12300   open full text
  • Reflexive convention: civil partnership, marriage and family.
    Brian Heaphy.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Drawing on an analysis of qualitative interview data from a study of formalized same‐sex relationships (civil partnerships) this paper examines the enduring significance of marriage and family as social institutions. In doing so, it intervenes in current debates in the sociology of family and personal life about how such institutions are undermined by reflexivity or bolstered by convention. Against the backdrop of dominating sociological frames for understanding the links between the changing nature of marriage and family and same‐sex relationship recognition, the paper analyses the diverse and overlapping ways (including the simple, relational, strategic, ambivalent and critical ways) in which same‐sex partners reflexively constructed and engaged with marriage and family conventions. My analysis suggests that instead of viewing reflexivity and convention as mutually undermining, as some sociologists of family and personal life do, it is insightful to explore how diverse forms of reflexivity and convention interact in everyday life to reconfigure the social institutions of marriage and family, but do not undermine them as such. I argue the case for recognizing the ways in which ‘reflexive convention’, or reflexive investment in convention, contributes to the continuing significance of marriage and family as social institutions. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 626-646, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12308   open full text
  • The path from social origins to top jobs: social reproduction via education.
    Alice Sullivan, Samantha Parsons, Francis Green, Richard D. Wiggins, George Ploubidis.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper provides a comprehensive account of the way in which cognitive and educational attainment mediate the link between social origins and elite social class destinations in mid‐life. Using the 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70), we assess the roles of a range of pathways through which educational advantage may lead to occupational attainment: cognitive development; private and selective secondary schools; school level qualifications; and higher education, including institution and field of study. Whereas past research has shown a residual direct effect of social origins on class destinations, we find that, once a sufficiently detailed picture of educational attainment is taken into account, education fully explains the link between social origins and top social class destinations. In contrast, the gap between men and women in achieving top social class positions is in no part accounted for by education. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 776-798, September 2018. '
    October 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12314   open full text
  • Structural and motivational mechanisms of academic achievement: a mediation model of social‐background effects on academic achievement.
    Hartmut Ditton, Michael Bayer, Florian Wohlkinger,.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 17, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper takes up ongoing discussions on the inequality of educational opportunities and formulates a conceptual model to link separate lines of research. Our particular focus is on combining motivational and structural approaches into a mediation model that explains differences in academic achievement. In the literature, four main mechanisms of social reproduction are discussed. Two main pathways refer to (1) parents’ expectations regarding their children’s academic success and (2) replicating cultural capital through intra‐familial cultural practices. (3) Parents’ perception of children’s abilities depends on social position and is influential for expectations of success. (4) For all three pathways, we expect effects on students’ motivational characteristics, which in turn influence academic achievement. We test our conceptual model by structural equation modelling using longitudinal data from primary school students in Germany. Empirical evidence is in line with the assumptions in the model. Cultural reproduction and expectations of success can be seen as the key components of the model. However, both chains of reproduction are related to each other by parents’ perception of child’s ability, and their effects are mediated by child’s motivational characteristics. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 17, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12506   open full text
  • Risking safety and rights: online sex work, crimes and ‘blended safety repertoires’.
    Rosie Campbell, Teela Sanders, Jane Scoular, Jane Pitcher, Stewart Cunningham.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 14, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract It has been well established that those working in the sex industry are at various risks of violence and crime depending on where they sell sex and the environments in which they work. What sociological research has failed to address is how crime and safety have been affected by the dynamic changing nature of sex work given the dominance of the internet and digital technologies, including the development of new markets such as webcamming. This paper reports the most comprehensive findings on the internet‐based sex market in the UK demonstrating types of crimes experienced by internet‐based sex workers and the strategies of risk management that sex workers adopt, building on our article in the British Journal of Sociology in 2007. We present the concept of ‘blended safety repertoires’ to explain how sex workers, particularly independent escorts, are using a range of traditional techniques alongside digitally enabled strategies to keep themselves safe. We contribute a deeper understanding of why sex workers who work indoors rarely report crimes to the police, reflecting the dilemmas experienced. Our findings highlight how legal and policy changes which seek to ban online adult services advertising and sex work related content within online spaces would have direct impact on the safety strategies online sex workers employ and would further undermine their safety. These findings occur in a context where aspects of sex work are quasi‐criminalized through the brothel keeping legislation. We conclude that the legal and policy failure to recognize sex work as a form of employment, contributes to the stigmatization of sex work and prevents individuals working together. Current UK policy disallows a framework for employment laws and health and safety standards to regulate sex work, leaving sex workers in the shadow economy, their safety at risk in a quasi‐legal system. In light of the strong evidence that the internet makes sex work safer, we argue that decriminalisation as a rights based model of regulation is most appropriate. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 14, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12493   open full text
  • The social life of DNA: racial reconciliation and institutional morality after the genome – a response.
    Alondra Nelson.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 575-579, September 2018.
    October 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12612   open full text
  • Race, Rome and the genome.
    Jenny Reardon.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 565-574, September 2018.
    October 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12601   open full text
  • A post‐liberal theory of stratification.
    Michelle Jackson, David B. Grusky.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 11, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The iconic ‘liberal theory’ of stratification fails to attend to the many types of downward mobility and wage loss generated by late‐industrial stratification systems. Although the liberal theory and its close cousins assume that loss and failure will be interpreted in individualistic terms, recent developments suggest instead that they are generating solidary groups that are increasingly locked into zero‐sum contest and successfully mobilized by politicians and other norm entrepreneurs. These developments imply a Marxisant future for late‐industrial inequality that bears scant resemblance to the highly individualized, unstructured, and non‐conflictual stratification system envisaged by the liberal theory. We outline a new post‐liberal theory of stratification that better captures the forces making for change and resistance in late‐industrial societies. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12505   open full text
  • Small, M. L. Someone To Talk To 2017 Oxford University Press 288 pp £22.99 (Hardback).
    Maxime Felder.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 10, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    October 10, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12510   open full text
  • Developing a critical trans gerontology.
    Michael Toze.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 09, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Within existing academic literature, ageing within trans populations has primarily been addressed from the perspective of offering advice to service providers and clinicians, with relatively limited application of critical sociological perspectives. This article seeks to integrate the critical perspectives on gerontology with transfeminism, identifying areas of commonality regarding accounts of an integrated lifecourse, scepticism of biomedicalization, and an emphasis on local context. The article suggests that this integration provides a fruitful basis for developing future research into the study of trans ageing, and also provides theoretical development across many debates around age, gender and the lifecourse. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 09, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12491   open full text
  • Strategic ignorance and global governance: an ecumenical approach to epistemologies of global power.
    Grégoire Mallard, Linsey McGoey.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 09, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract How can we account for the role of ignorance and knowledge in global governance? It is a contention of earlier scholarship in international relations and political sociology that knowledge production is tightly coupled with rational action – regardless of whether knowledge widely influences different stakeholders or not. This scholarship equally tends to assume an ignorance‐knowledge binary relationship that associates ignorance with powerlessness and knowledge with power. This is a view we dispute. Calling for a new approach to the study of ignorance and knowledge in international politics, our article builds on research from ignorance studies, science and technology studies and critical race theory to derive a novel typology of epistemologies of power in which truth and ignorance are defined and combined in a plurality of ways. Approaching differing epistemologies of power in the transnational realm in a general or ‘ecumenical’ manner, we identify weaknesses in earlier approaches to the study of knowledge production in global affairs, and present four new concepts: ‘factual determinism’, ‘cynical realism’, ‘unseeing proceduralism’ and ‘hopeful constructivism’. Through this framework, our article calls for greater recognition of the constitutive role that ignorance plays in operations of power on a global scale. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 09, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12504   open full text
  • How do international lawyers handle facts? The role of folk sociological theories at the International Criminal Court.
    Julien Seroussi.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 09, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The International Criminal Court (ICC) investigates international crimes committed in different parts of the world. Earlier scholarly analysis of the work performed by the ICC judges has pointed out that judges often lack cultural and national understanding of the local norms and customs of regions where defendants come from. This article treats this lack of contextual knowledge displayed by the court as a case of structural ignorance rather than an aberration to be ‘exposed’ or censured. International lawyers indeed must ground their legal narratives with plausible sociological explanations of contextual elements to overcome their lack of familiarity with the field and the scarcity of their investigative resources. By uncovering the role of ‘folk sociological theories’ (FSTs) in the establishment of facts in a court context, this article addresses the debate over the efficiency of international criminal justice by highlighting the need to bring historical truth back in. The empirical evidence is based on several years of participant observation in the ICC during the trials against Mathieu Ngudjolo and Germain Katanga, two militiamen from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 09, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12604   open full text
  • Money and relationships online: communication and norm formation in women’s discussions of couple resource allocation.
    Liz Moor, Shireen Kanji.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 07, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Research on intra‐household resource allocation practices has largely ignored the role of communication within but especially beyond the household. This article shows that discussions engaged in outside of the household shed light on intra‐household deliberation and also contribute to an understanding of how norms are formed and used in discussions and negotiations. Using data from the website Mumsnet, and grounding our analysis in a framework that combines the literature on gender norms in allocation practices with insights from the study of online communication, we contribute to the sociological literature on household distribution in three ways: first, we show that women use discussion sites like Mumsnet to clarify and sometimes contest social norms regarding money and relationships; second, we show that users conceive the ability to communicate with partners as a source of ‘relationship power’ and use online discussion with other women to develop that skill; third, we argue that sites like Mumsnet provide fresh insights into household resource allocation processes. The article concludes with a broader discussion of the role of communication in household distribution and the value of online data for understanding such processes. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 07, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12492   open full text
  • Robert, Wuthnow. The Left Behind: Decline and Rage in Rural America 2018 Princeton University Press 200 pp. £20.00.
    Katherine J. Cramer.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 06, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    October 06, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12509   open full text
  • The IMF failure that wasn’t: risk ignorance during the European debt crisis.
    Pierre Pénet.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 06, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article builds on ignorance studies to revisit how we understand the role of expertise in international policymaking. A fundamental component of ignorance is concealing what you know. For experts, risk ignorance is a strategic resource when the policymaking process becomes a contested exchange. This article covers IMF lending programmes in Europe in 2008–13 with a special focus on Greece. Empirical data is drawn from policy documents. I find that risk ignorance at the IMF resulted from a joint process of ‘private alteration’ and ‘public obfuscation’: the alteration of normal scenarios of debt sustainability in private negotiations worked in tandem with the obfuscation of programme risks in the public stage. The empirical contribution of this article is to show that the ‘failure’ of the IMF programme for Greece can be reconceptualized as ‘success’. The immediate goal of the programme was to bailout Greece’s creditors and avoid the breakup of European monetary institutions. In this respect, the programme was successful. But success came at a huge cost for Greece. Analytically, this article suggests that knowledge procurement based on empirical fact‐gathering is not always the ultimate goal of international organizations and the communities of experts working within them. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 06, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12602   open full text
  • Morality in racialized institutions.
    James R. Jones.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 05, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 560-564, September 2018.
    October 05, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12598   open full text
  • Antagonistic recursivities and successive cover‐ups: the case of private nuclear proliferation.
    Grégoire Mallard.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 05, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract “Legal recursivity” is a concept introduced by socio‐legal scholars to capture the progressive elaboration of transnational rules through policy linkages at the international and domestic levels, and the associated jurisdictional expansion of international institutions to new policy areas. Recursivity can take many forms, and this article introduces the concept of “antagonistic recursivity” to capture a dual process of recursive legal innovation and antagonistic obstruction by the same policy actors. The article shows how such antagonistic recursivity worked in the case of the global fight against private nuclear proliferators after the 2003 revelations about the reach of the A. Q. Khan network. In the case under study, antagonistic recursivities took the form of executive‐driven innovation in rule‐making and simultaneous subversion of the same rules by the executive most implicated in the new cycle of policy innovation: the United States government. This paradox can be explained in the following manner. Antagonistic recursivity, the article demonstrates, is likely to emerge when legal rules of global governance have already been previously defined in an opaque manner, so as to help hegemons follow multiple foreign policy goals: the subversion of the most recent policy innovations is then the unfortunate result of attempts to hide prior cover‐ups rather than a purposeful violation of new rules. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 05, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12494   open full text
  • DNA, reconciliation and social empowerment.
    Yulia Egorova.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 05, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 545-551, September 2018.
    October 05, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12597   open full text
  • Plausible folk theories: throwing veils of plausibility over zones of ignorance in global governance.
    Terence C. Halliday.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 05, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract In an age of expertise, where knowledge ostensibly reigns, global governance not infrequently settles for ignorance. To understand this puzzle, this article draws upon extensive empirical research on two sites within the global governance of finance. One is directed to the suppression of money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism by the Financial Action Task Force and International Monetary Fund. Another intends to stimulate the supply of otherwise scarce money to financial markets through global lawmaking by the UN Commission on International Trade Law. In both cases vast enterprises of global regulation and lawmaking proceed on weakly founded justificatory rhetorics designated here as ‘plausible folk theories.’ Six properties make a folk theory plausible: parsimony, face validity, rhetorical compactness, ambiguity, affinity with extant beliefs, and unexamined premises and logics. Plausible folk theories offer organizational benefits to IOs. They also allow a politics of temporality that may shorten temporal horizons, or weaken and eliminate IO accountability. Finally, three variants of ignorance contribute to choices by international organizations not to get beyond plausible folk theories to justify their regulatory and lawmaking initiatives: inadvertent ignorance, willful ignorance, and strategic or rational ignorance. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 05, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12605   open full text
  • The uses of disorder in negotiated information orders: information leveraging and changing norms in global public health governance.
    Carol A. Heimer.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 04, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The SARS epidemic that broke out in late 2002 in China’s Guangdong Province highlighted the difficulties of reliance on state‐provided information when states have incentives to conceal discrediting information about public health threats. Using SARS and the International Health Regulations (IHR) as a starting point, this article examines negotiated information orders in global public health governance and the irregularities in the supply of data that underlie them. Negotiated information orders within and among the organizations in a field (here, e.g., the World Health Organization, member states, government agencies, and international non‐governmental organizations) spell out relationships among different categories of knowledge and non‐knowledge – what is known, acknowledged to be known, and available for use in decision making versus what might be known but cannot be acknowledged or officially used. Through information leveraging, technically sufficient information then becomes socially sufficient information. Thus it is especially information initially categorized as non‐knowledge – including suppressed data, rumour, unverified evidence, and unofficial information – that creates pressure for the renegotiation of information orders. The argument and evidence of the article also address broader issues about how international law and global norms are realigned, how global norms change, and how social groups manage risk. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    October 04, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12495   open full text
  • Slavery and institutional morality at Georgetown University: Reply to Nelson.
    Adam Rothman.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 04, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 552-559, September 2018.
    October 04, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12600   open full text
  • Preference for realistic art predicts support for Brexit1.
    Noah Carl, Lindsay Richards, Anthony Heath.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 30, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Following the UK’s EU referendum in June 2016, there has been considerable interest from scholars in understanding the characteristics that differentiate Leave supporters from Remain supporters. Since Leave supporters score higher on conscientiousness but lower on neuroticism and openness, and given their general proclivity toward conservatism, we hypothesized that preference for realistic art would predict support for Brexit. Data on a large nationally representative sample of the British population were obtained, and preference for realistic art was measured using a four‐item binary choice test. Controlling for a range of personal characteristics, we found that respondents who preferred all four realistic paintings were 15–20 percentage points more likely to support Leave than those who preferred zero or one realistic paintings. This effect was comparable to the difference in support between those with a degree and those with no education, and was robust to controlling for the respondent’s party identity. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    September 30, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12489   open full text
  • Reconciliation projects and the ontological choreography of race.
    Aaron Panofsky.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 26, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 538-544, September 2018.
    September 26, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12599   open full text
  • The making of an egalitarian elite: school ethos and the production of privilege.
    Maria Törnqvist.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 02, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Research on privilege and education often focuses on institutions that are elite in a rather traditional way, for example schools that instruct the children of the upper classes according to a reproductive logic that reinforces existing inequalities. The present article addresses the fostering of advantage from the angle of a more ambiguous case. The Global College, a municipal Swedish upper secondary school specialized in environmental issues and global justice, offers an empirical prism for discussing the cultivation of elite identification through the formative potential of an egalitarian ethos. The relation between ethics and class is examined, not only in terms of how moral stands are classed, but also by investigating into the productive capacities of such orientation. Through extensive ethnographic fieldwork, the study unfolds how a possible tension between egalitarianism and elitism resolves into a productive relation whereby the students’ incarnation of ethico‐political ideals becomes a means for developing agency, confidence, entrepreneurial skills and an overall sense of ease. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    July 02, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12483   open full text
  • Issue Information.

    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 235-236, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12378   open full text
  • Inegalitarian populism and the university: British reflections on Newfield's The Great Mistake: How We Wrecked Public Universities and How We Can Fix Them.
    John Holmwood.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 510-517, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339_5   open full text
  • The Great Defunding of Public Higher Education in America.
    Kim Voss.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 506-510, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339_4   open full text
  • The Argument is Wrong and the Message is Dangerous.
    Henry E. Brady.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 498-505, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339_3   open full text
  • Self‐Interests, Corporatization and Rising Educational Inequality in Public Higher Education: A Review of The Great Mistake.
    Prudence L. Carter.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 493-498, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339_2   open full text
  • Have we wrecked public universities? The case of the American decline cycle.
    Christopher Newfield.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 484-493, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339_1   open full text
  • Newfield, C. The Great Mistake: How We Wrecked Public Universities and How We Can Fix Them. 2016 Johns Hopkins University Press 448 pp US$32.95 (hardback).
    Rebecca Elliott.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 11, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 483-483, June 2018.
    June 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12339   open full text
  • Do values explain the low employment levels of Muslim women around the world? A within‐ and between‐country analysis.
    Eman Abdelhadi, Paula England.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 25, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Using worldwide data from the World Values Survey (WVS) gathered in 2010–2014, we examine two distinct ways in which Islam may be associated with women's employment. We show that, within their countries, Muslim women are less likely to be employed than women of other religions. We also examine between‐country differences and find that, net of education and family statuses, the employment levels of women living in countries that are 90–100 per cent Muslim are not significantly different than those living in countries that are only 0–20 per cent Muslim. Then we test a prevailing view: that Islam discourages gender egalitarian values, and that these values – held by women themselves or people around them – explain why Muslim women are less likely to be employed than women of other religions within their own countries. Despite the rich measures of values in the WVS and a large sample, we find no evidence that values explain any of the lower employment of Muslim women, mainly because values have little or no effect on women's employment. Thus, we conclude that most of the world's gap in employment between Muslim women and other women is within‐country and is not explained by gender ideology. Future research should examine alternative hypotheses, including ethno‐religious discrimination. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 25, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12486   open full text
  • Curran, D. Risk, Power, and Inequality in the 21st Century 2016 Palgrave Macmillan 196pp £64.99 (Hardback).
    Jens Oliver Zinn.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 21, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    May 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12487   open full text
  • Stakeholder identities in Britain's neoliberal ethical community: Polish narratives of earned citizenship in the context of the UK's EU referendum.
    Derek McGhee, Chris Moreh, Athina Vlachantoni.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This article examines the narrative strategies through which Polish migrants in the UK challenge the formal rights of political membership and attempt to redefine the boundaries of ‘citizenship’ along notions of deservedness. The analysed qualitative data originate from an online survey conducted in the months before the 2016 EU referendum, and the narratives emerge from the open‐text answers to two survey questions concerning attitudes towards the referendum and the exclusion of resident EU nationals from the electoral process. The analysis identifies and describes three narrative strategies in reaction to the public discourses surrounding the EU referendum – namely discursive complicity, intergroup hostility and defensive assertiveness – which attempt to redefine the conditions of membership in Britain's ‘ethical community’ in respect to welfare practices. Examining these processes simultaneously ‘from below’ and ‘from outside’ the national political community, the paper argues, can reveal more of the transformation taking place in conceptions of citizenship at the sociological level, and the article aims to identify the contours of a ‘neoliberal communitarian citizenship’ as internalized by mobile EU citizens. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12485   open full text
  • ‘No one to trust’: the cultural embedding of atomism in financial markets.
    Galit Ailon.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 13, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The paper ethnographically explores the cultural embedding of atomistic indifference in online, global financial markets: arenas that have been digitally designed according to economic ideals and that demand an extreme form of relational and social dissociation from the partners to exchange and from those affected by the transactions. Its case‐study is lay financial‐trading in Israel, a country undergoing extensive neoliberalization. The study shows that dissociation is embedded in an economic culture marked by constant, multi‐sited declarations that economic‐Others are cold, uncaring and manipulative. It takes shape as traders convert the distrust towards Others into distrust towards portions of the Self that represent links to these Others, namely their own social‐psychology and social concern. Acting atomistically and selfishly in the market thus entails considerable reflexive work. The paper contributes to an ongoing debate on the moral and cultural embeddedness of markets in general and of the expanding financial markets in particular. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 13, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12382   open full text
  • ‘Friends that last a lifetime’: the importance of emotions amongst volunteers working with refugees in Calais.
    Mark Doidge, Elisa Sandri.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 13, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The European ‘refugee crisis’ has generated a broad movement of volunteers offering their time and skills to support refugees across the continent, in the absence of nation states. This article focuses on volunteers who helped in the informal refugee camp in Calais called the ‘Jungle’. It looks at the importance of emotions as a motivating factor for taking on responsibilities that are usually carried out by humanitarian aid organizations. We argue that empathy is not only the initial motivator for action, but it also sustains the voluntary activity as volunteers make sense of their emotions through working in the camp. This type of volunteering has also created new spaces for sociability and community, as volunteers have formed strong emotional and relational bonds with each other and with the refugees. Finally, this article contributes to the growing body of literature that aims at repositioning emotions within the social sciences research to argue that they are an important analytical tool to understand social life and fieldwork. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 13, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12484   open full text
  • Emotion, reflexivity and social change in the era of extreme fossil fuels.
    Debra J. Davidson.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 09, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Reflexivity is an important sociological lens through which to examine the means by which people engage in actions that contribute to social reproduction or social elaboration. Reflexivity theorists have largely overlooked the central place of emotions in reflexive processing, however, thus missing opportunities to enhance our understanding of reflexivity by capitalizing on recent scholarship on emotions emanating from other fields of inquiry. This paper explores the role of emotion in reflexivity, with a qualitative analysis of social responses to hydraulic fracturing in Alberta, Canada, utilizing narrative analysis of long‐form interviews with rural landowners who have experienced direct impacts from hydraulic fracturing, and have attempted to voice their concerns in the public sphere. Based on interviews with a selection of two interview participants, the paper highlights the means by which emotions shape reflexivity in consequential ways, beginning with personal and highly individualized emotional responses to contingent situations, which then factor into the social interactions engaged in the pursuit of personal projects. The shared emotional context that emerges then plays a substantial role in shaping outcomes and their implications for social stasis or change. This study exemplifies the extent to which reflexive processing in response to breaches in the social order can be emotionally tumultuous affairs, constituting a significant personal toll that many may be unwilling to pay. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 09, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12380   open full text
  • Chumley L. Creativity Class: Art School and Culture Work in Postsocialist China 2016 Princeton University Press 253pp $35.00 (Hardback).
    Larissa Buchholz.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 08, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    May 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12377   open full text
  • ‘Scarier than another storm’: values at risk in the mapping and insuring of US floodplains.
    Rebecca Elliott.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 08, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract How do people respond to the ways in which insurance mediates environmental risks? Socio‐cultural risk research has characterized and analyzed the experiential dimension of risk, but has yet to focus on insurance, which is a key institution shaping how people understand and relate to risk. Insurance not only assesses and communicates risk; it also economizes it, making the problem on the ground not just one of risk, but also of value. This article addresses these issues with an investigation of the social life of the flood insurance rate map, the central technology of the U.S. National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), as it grafts a new landscape of ‘value at risk’ onto the physical and social world of New York City in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Like other risk technologies, ubiquitous in modern societies as decision‐making and planning tools, the map disseminates information about value and risk in order to tame uncertainty and enable prudent action oriented toward the future. However, drawing together interview, ethnographic, and documentary data, I find that for its users on the ground, the map does not simply measure ‘value at risk’ in ways that produce clear strategies for protecting property values from flooding. Instead, it puts values‐beyond simply the financial worth of places‐at risk, as well as implicates past, present, and future risks beyond simply flooding. By informing and enlarging the stakes of what needs protecting, and from what, I argue that plural and interacting ‘values at risk’ shape how people live with and respond to environmental risks that are mediated by insurance technologies. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 08, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12381   open full text
  • Do ‘his’ education and class matter? The changing effect of the husband on women's labour‐market transitions in Italy and Britain.
    Cristina Solera.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 07, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract A new stream of sociological and demographic theory emphasizes individualization as the key process in late modernity. As maintained by Hakim (), women also have increasingly become agents of their own biographies, less influenced by the social class and the family. In this study, I intend to contribute to this debate by analysing how, in Italy and Britain, women's movements between employment and housework are linked to their husband's education and class, and how this link has changed across cohorts. Using discrete‐time event‐history modelling on the BHPS and ILFI, my findings show that in both countries, if the woman's educational and labour‐market profile is controlled for, the husband's occupation and education have lost importance. Yet, although based more on ‘her’ than ‘his’ profile, divisions along ‘classic’ lines are still evident and not context‐free, and they assume different forms in the two countries with distinctive institutional and cultural settings. In ‘liberal’ Britain, women's labour‐market participation responds more to motherhood and class than to education, while in ‘familistic’ Italy education seems more important, which suggests the existence of returns over and above strictly human capital/economic ones. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 07, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12373   open full text
  • Can cultural consumption increase future earnings? Exploring the economic returns to cultural capital.
    Aaron Reeves, Robert de Vries.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 07, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Cultural consumption is often viewed as a form of embodied cultural capital which can be converted into economic rewards (e.g., earnings) because such practices increase the likelihood of moving into more advantaged social positions. However, quantitative evidence supporting this theory remains uncertain because it is often unable to rule out alternative explanations. Cultural consumption appears to influence hiring decisions in some elite firms, in both the US and the UK, but it is unclear whether these processes are applicable to other professional occupations and other labour market processes, such as promotions. We examine these processes using data from Understanding Society, an individual‐level panel survey conducted in the UK, allowing us to explore whether cultural consumption predicts future earnings, upward social mobility and promotions. People who consume a larger number of cultural activities are more likely to earn higher wages in the future, to be upwardly socially mobile, and to be promoted. Cultural consumption, then, can function as cultural capital in some labour market settings, potentially contributing to the reproduction of income inequality between generations. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    May 07, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12374   open full text
  • How do parents’ educational fields affect the choice of educational field?
    Håvard Helland, Øyvind N. Wiborg.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 26, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This study examines the links between parental education and students’ choice of field of study in Norwegian higher education. In our interpretation of the results, we suggest a status group perspective that integrates risk aversion models, micro‐class theory, and cultural reproduction schemes. Complete Norwegian register data for all individuals born from 1955 to 1980 allow for a fine‐grained examination of diverse fields of study not attempted in earlier studies. The findings reveal that intergenerational reproduction of educational fields is widespread, but its extent varies across fields of study. The tendency is most pronounced among children of professional, educated parents with masters and higher‐level degrees. Moreover, the analysis shows that students who do not choose the same field as their parents nonetheless tend to choose educational fields close to those of their parents. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 26, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12370   open full text
  • Privileges and penalties in the legal profession: an intersectional analysis of career progression.
    Jennifer Tomlinson, Danat Valizade, Daniel Muzio, Andy Charlwood, Sundeep Aulakh.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 26, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Intersectionality theory is concerned with integrating social characteristics to better understanding complex human relations and inequalities in organizations and societies (McCall ). Recently, intersectionality research has taken a categorical and quantitative turn as scholars critically adopt but retain existing social categories to explain differences in labour market outcomes. A key contention is that social categories carry penalties or privileges and their intersection promotes or hinders the life chances of particular groups and individuals. An emergent debate is whether the intersection of disadvantaged characteristics (such as female gender or minority ethnic status) produce penalties that are additive, multiplicative or ameliorative. Research is inconclusive and as yet pays little attention to moderating factors such as employer type, size, geographic location or work profile. Drawing on administrative records for individuals qualified as solicitors in England and Wales, collected by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), combined with aggregated workforce data and firm characteristics of their law firms, we undertake a statistical analysis of the intersection of gender and ethnicity in the profession with a degree of precision and nuance not previously possible. In response to calls to broaden studies of inequalities and intersectionality beyond their effect on pay or income (Castilla ) we focus on career progression to partnership as our key measure of success. The original contribution of our study is twofold. First, we establish statistically different profiles of law firms, showing how the solicitors’ profession is stratified by gender, ethnicity and socio‐economic background, as well as the type of legal work undertaken by developing a model of socio‐economic stratification in the profession. Second, we demonstrate that while penalties tend to be additive (i.e. the sum of the individual ethnic and gender penalties) this varies significantly by law firm profile and in some situations the effect is ameliorative. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 26, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12375   open full text
  • Smångs, M. Doing Violence, Making Race: Lynching and White Racial Group Formation in the U.S. South, 1882–1930 2017 Routledge 180pp (Hardback).
    Amy Kate Bailey.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 24, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    April 24, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12376   open full text
  • Bessant J. Farthing R. and Watts R. The Precarious Generation: A Political Economy of Young People 2017 Routledge 228 pp. £85.00 (Hardback) £36.99 (Paperback).
    Maria Grasso.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 24, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    April 24, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12379   open full text
  • Habits and orders of everyday life: commensal adjustment in Anglo‐French couples.
    Isabelle Darmon, Alan Warde.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 17, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper examines processes of habit reshuffling and change in different contexts of household formation, looking specifically at habits regarding eating and commensality. It is based on a study of 14 couples, each with one English and one French partner, half of whom live in France, half in England. We examine the interplay between partners, their determination to eat together as a couple, and the various ‘orders’ associated with their commensal pact (diets, routines, extra‐marital commensality), both when they start as couples and as parents of young children. We draw on the specificity of cross‐national couple experience to cast light on processes of adjustment – to one another, and to the new country of residence for the migrant partner. In particular, we explore the potential of notions of ‘split’ and ‘solid’ ‘patrimonies of incorporated habits’, ‘re‐shuffling’ of habits and dispositions, and ‘habit memory’, to characterize the dynamics of habits at play in each of the orders under scrutiny. Overall, the paper contributes to the analysis of habit as the ‘stuff’ of orders of everyday life. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 17, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12371   open full text
  • Disability differentials in educational attainment in England: primary and secondary effects.
    Stella Chatzitheochari, Lucinda Platt.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 17, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Childhood disability has been largely overlooked in social stratification and life course research. As a result, we know remarkably little about mechanisms behind well‐documented disability differentials in educational outcomes. This study investigates educational transitions of disabled youth using data from the Longitudinal Study of Young People in England. We draw on social stratification literature on primary and secondary effects as well as that on stigma and labelling in order to explain disabled young people's educational outcomes. We find that disability differentials in transition rates to full‐time academic upper secondary education and to university are largely the result of primary effects, reflected in differences in school performance between disabled and non‐disabled young people. However, we also find evidence for secondary effects, with similarly achieving disabled young people less likely to pursue full‐time academic upper secondary education compared to their non‐disabled peers. We examine the extent to which these effects can be explained by disabled youth's suppressed educational expectations as well as their experiences of being bullied at school, which we link to the stigma experienced by disabled young people and their families. We find that educational expectations play an important role at crucial transitions in the English school system, while the effect of bullying is considerably smaller. By drawing attention to different social processes contributing to disability differentials in attainment, our study moves beyond medical models that implicitly assume a naturalized association of disability with poor educational outcomes, and demonstrates the parallels of disability with other ascriptive inequalities. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 17, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12372   open full text
  • A child's day: trends in time use in the UK from 1975 to 2015.
    Killian Mullan.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 11, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper examines change in school‐age children’s (8–16 years) time use in the United Kingdom between 1975 and 2015. Over this period, concerns for children’s safety, technological change, and increased emphasis on success in school are widely argued to have altered children’s daily lives, leading for example to less time outdoors, more time in screen‐based activities, and more time focused on education. Using data from three national time use surveys collected in 1974–5, 2000–01 and 2014–15, this paper explores the extent to which these arguments reflect actual change in how children spend their time throughout the day. The results show that between 1975 and 2015 children increased their time at home, and spent more time in screen‐based activities and doing homework. Decreases in time in out‐of‐home activities were concentrated in time in unstructured play, partially offset by increased time in sport. A decomposition of trends revealed that, despite a narrowing of the gender gap in time in housework, gender remains a significant factor determining many aspects of children’s time use. In contrast, the significance of age declined in most leisure activities, with the exception of screen‐based activities where significant age differences emerged in 2000 and widened further in 2015. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12369   open full text
  • Beyond the heartlands: deindustrialization, naturalization and the meaning of an ‘industrial’ tradition.
    David Nettleingham.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 11, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Deindustrialization is a complex and multifaceted series of processes and transitions, reflecting the equally complicated web of social relationships and interdependencies that constitute(d) an industrial society. Contemporary scholars have looked beyond just the economic impact of industrial loss, to the cultural, temporal and spatial legacies and impacts wrought by the mass closures of the 1980s, as well as the continuing presence of an industrial identity in struggles over representation and regeneration. However, deindustrialization has a history that precedes the volatility and culmination of that period, and has impacted upon a more geographically diverse range of former industrial locations than are commonly represented. The narratives that surround some sites are complicated by their displacement in time, place and discourse; they lack the political capital of an ‘industrial’ identity through this disassociation. In this article I aim to go beyond what we might consider the industrial ‘heartlands’ of the UK to a place that has felt the impact of deindustrialization, but which falls outside of the usual representations of the UK's industrial past. I explore how the industrial identity and memory of a place can be naturalized and selectively reworked for the needs of the hour, the very meaning of ‘industrial’ altered in the process. I argue that for sites unable to access or utilize the imagery of modern, heavy industry for community or promotional aims, deindustrialization becomes a process of rewriting an historic identity – one that sheds new light on industrial loss in diverse situations, and at an ever‐increasing distance from closure. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 11, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12365   open full text
  • Youth participation in ‘post‐secular’ times: young Muslim and Buddhist practitioners as religious citizens.
    Anita Harris, Kim Lam.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 10, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Recently there has been renewed interest in the role of religion in the public sphere in the context of a ‘post‐secular’ age characterized by the resurgence of religious identities and communities in increasingly diverse, multi‐faith societies. Young people's active political and civic engagement has also emerged as a core challenge for robust democracies. While an interesting body of current research suggests that religious commitment may cultivate participation amongst youth by acting as an incubator of civic and political engagement, such literature often positions religiosity as outside of, and consequently at odds with participation in a secular public sphere. We suggest that while religiosity may indeed act as an incubator for civic and political engagement, we propose greater attention to an emergence of alternative, entwined conceptualizations of religious citizenship evident in the practices, performances and dispositions of young Muslim and Buddhist religious practitioners in Australia, whereby processes of individuation contribute to greater fluidity within and across the domains of the religious and the civic. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 10, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12368   open full text
  • Pereira Maria do Mar. Power, Knowledge and Feminist Scholarship. An Ethnography of Academia 2017 Routledge 246 pp £90.00 (hardback).
    Isabelle Hertner, Katherine Twamley.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 06, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    April 06, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12367   open full text
  • Producing ‘internal suspect bodies’: divisive effects of UK counter‐terrorism measures on Muslim communities in Leeds and Bradford.
    Madeline‐Sophie Abbas.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 06, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Research on UK government counter‐terrorism measures has claimed that Muslims are treated as a ‘suspect community’. However, there is limited research exploring the divisive effects that membership of a ‘suspect community’ has on relations within Muslim communities. Drawing from interviews with British Muslims living in Leeds or Bradford, I address this gap by explicating how co‐option of Muslim community members to counter extremism fractures relations within Muslim communities. I reveal how community members internalize fears of state targeting which precipitates internal disciplinary measures. I contribute the category of ‘internal suspect body’ which is materialized through two intersecting conditions within preventative counter‐terrorism: the suspected extremist for Muslims to look out for and suspected informer who might report fellow Muslims. I argue that the suspect community operates through a network of relations by which terrors of counter‐terrorism are reproduced within Muslim communities with divisive effects. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    April 06, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12366   open full text
  • The ‘other’ London effect: the diversification of London's suburban grammar schools and the rise of hyper‐selective elite state schools.
    Sol Gamsu.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 31, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper examines the rise of a new elite of ‘super‐state’ schools in London, revealing a growing divide within the state sector which problematizes claims that the capital is a ‘hotspot’ for social mobility (Social Mobility Commission ). Although recent research has revealed a ‘London effect’ in which students in the capital on Free School Meals outperform their peers in other regions (Greaves, Macmillan and Sibieta ), inequalities between London's schools in access to elite universities have been overlooked. Drawing on a case study of a suburban London grammar school, ‘King Henry's School’, I show how ethnic‐minority suburbanization has combined with an institutional strategy to compete with elite private schools. Strategies of selection have been mobilized alongside elements of elite ‘gentlemanly’ educational culture in order to reposition the school within the hierarchy of London's schools. The result is a hyper‐selective school which provides a conduit to elite universities for upwardly mobile British‐Asian students. I show that this strategy has strong parallels with the school's attempts in the early twentieth century to compete with London's fee‐paying ‘public’ schools. The continuing symbolic value of ‘traditional’ forms of elite educational culture to a school seeking to reposition itself within the field reflects deep structural patterns of inequality in English education. To understand how apparent improvements in social mobility can sit alongside deepening inequalities between state schools, there is a need for a historical sociological approach that takes account of long‐term processes of institutional change (Savage ; Inglis ). - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    March 31, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12364   open full text
  • Mobility closure in the upper class: assessing time and forms of capital.
    Maren Toft.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 30, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Most understandings of the ways classes become social groupings centre on processes of mobility closure whereby mutual appreciation and recognition within classes arise from homogenous experiences over time. The mapping of such structured biographies, however, remains understudied. This paper explores intra‐ and intergenerational mobility patterns in the upper strata of the Norwegian class structure and aims to include temporal processes and multiple forms of capital in the quantification of class trajectories. By combining multiple correspondence analysis and social sequence analysis, two important but often neglected aspects of recruitment to the upper class are emphasized: first, by introducing multiple forms of capital, different ways of maintaining mobility closure are demonstrated; second, different pathways to power are highlighted by distinguishing between divergent class careers. A key aim of the analysis is to explore internal divisions within the upper class in forms of parental capital (an ‘origin space’) and link these divisions to a typology of ‘destination careers’ in adulthood. The analysis suggests that individuals from modest origins are more likely to have careers that feature a biographically late arrival and/or short‐term affiliations to upper‐class positions whereas individuals from families rich in capital are more likely to have stable careers in the upper‐class fractions from which they originate. The analysis thus reveals important divisions in the trajectories of Norwegians who reach the upper class; not only are there differences in their upbringing in terms of the availability of different amounts and types of capital but such divisions also seem linked to their own class careers later in adulthood. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    March 30, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12362   open full text
  • Social mobility and demand for redistribution in Europe: a comparative analysis.
    Antonio M. Jaime‐Castillo, Ildefonso Marqués‐Perales.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 14, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The literature on preferences for redistribution has paid little attention to the effect of social mobility on the demand for redistribution and no systematic test of the hypotheses connecting social mobility and preferences for redistribution has yet been done to date. We use the diagonal reference model to estimate the effect of origin and destination classes on preferences for redistribution in a large sample of European countries using data from the European Social Survey. Our findings are consistent with the logic of acculturation in the sense that newcomers tend to adapt their views to those of the destination class at early stages and that upward and downward mobility do not have distinctive effects on the formation of political preferences. However, even though social origins seem to have a limited impact on preferences for redistribution, the evidence does not support the hypothesis that mobile and non‐mobile individuals are alike. We also find that the effect of social origin on preferences varies largely across countries. The empirical evidence leads to the conclusion that the effect of social origin on preferences for redistribution increases in contexts of strong familism. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    March 14, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12363   open full text
  • The composition of precarity: ‘emerging’ composers’ experiences of opportunity culture in contemporary classical music.
    Neil Thomas Smith, Rachel Thwaites.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 28, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper examines the precarious working lives of ‘emerging’ composers attempting to build a career in the world of new classical music in the UK. This topic is approached by considering the ‘composition opportunity’, success in which is seen as an important element in ‘making it’ in this sphere. We argue that such schemes in fact manifest a crucial tension in the nature of artistic labour, and are, at the very least, problematic in their function as conduits towards full professional identity. They may instead act to maintain the precarious working situation of composers in a neoliberal age. The working lives of artists are all too rarely illuminated, and new music composers are no exception; this survey of 47 emerging composers is the largest study of such individuals in the UK. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    February 28, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12359   open full text
  • DeHanas D.N. London Youth, Religion, and Politics: Engagement and Activism from Brixton to Brick Lane 2016 Oxford University Press 246 pp £55.00 (Hardback).
    Bryan S. Turner.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 27, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 876-877, September 2018.
    February 27, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12361   open full text
  • Reich, A. Selling our Souls: The Commodification of US Hospital Care 2014 Princeton University Press 248 pp £32.95 (Hardback).
    Marion Fourcade.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 25, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 868-870, September 2018.
    February 25, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12352   open full text
  • One world is not enough: the structured phenomenology of lifestyle migrants in East Asia.
    Rob Stones, Kate Botterill, Maggy Lee, Karen O'Reilly.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 25, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract The paper is based on original empirical research into the lifestyle migration of European migrants, primarily British, to Thailand and Malaysia, and of Hong Kong Chinese migrants to Mainland China. We combine strong structuration theory (SST) with Heideggerian phenomenology to develop a distinctive approach to the interplay between social structures and the lived experience of migrants. The approach enables a rich engagement with the subjectivities of migrants, an engagement that is powerfully enhanced by close attention to how these inner lives are deeply interwoven with relevant structural contexts. The approach is presented as one that could be fruitfully adopted to explore parallel issues within all types of migration. As is intrinsic to lifestyle migration, commitment to a better quality of life is central to the East Asian migrants, but they seek an uncomplicated, physically enhanced texture of life, framed more by a phenomenology of prosaic well‐being than of self‐realization or transcendence. In spite of possessing economic and status privileges due to their relatively elite position within global structures the reality for a good number of the lifestyle migrants falls short of their prior expectations. They are subject to particular kinds of socio‐structural marginaliszation as a consequence of the character of their migration, and they find themselves relatively isolated and facing a distinct range of challenges. A comparison with research into various groups of migrants to the USA brings into relief the specificities of the socio‐structural positioning of the lifestyle migrants of the study. Those East Asian migrants who express the greatest sense of ease and contentment seem to be those who have responded creatively to the specific challenges of their socio‐structural situation. Often, this appears to have been achieved through understated but active involvements with their new settings and through sustaining focused transnational connections and relationships. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    February 25, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12357   open full text
  • Bureaucratic power in note‐writing: authoritative expertise within the state.
    Marte Mangset, Kristin Asdal.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 24, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract What produces the power of senior civil servants at ministries of finance, positioned at the top of the bureaucratic hierarchy? Max Weber has claimed that a hierarchical organization, meritocratic recruitment and procedural work provide bureaucracies with legitimacy. In particular he insisted on the role of Fachwissen (disciplinary knowledge) obtained through formal education. However, he also argued for the role of Dienstwissen, forms of knowledge and skills stemming from the experience of service in itself. Weber did not elaborate on this concept in detail, and few analysts of governmental expertise have examined this notion. We draw on the practice‐turn in sociology, combining the study of governmental expertise with micro‐sociological studies of administrative practices. By analysing interviews with 48 senior civil servants at the British, French and Norwegian ministries of finance about their daily practices, this article demonstrates that bureaucratic note‐writing and the procedural evaluation of such notes constitute a key form of expertise that yields authority. The study provides an analytical framework for understanding what administrative expertise consists of, how it is integral to procedural work, the forms bureaucratic hierarchies take in practice and how these three dimensions provide authority. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    February 24, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12356   open full text
  • Baiocchi, G. and Ganuza, E. Popular Democracy: The Paradox of Participation 2017 Stanford University Press 224 pp. $24.95 (Paperback).
    Gabriel Hetland.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 23, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 870-872, September 2018.
    February 23, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12353   open full text
  • Hsu, B.Y. Borrowing Together: Microfinance and Cultivating Social Ties 2017 Cambridge University Press 174 pp £75.00 (Hardback).
    Supriya Singh.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 21, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 873-874, September 2018.
    February 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12354   open full text
  • D., Elder‐Vass Profit and Gift in the Digital Economy Cambridge University Press 2016 257 pp. £99.99 (hardback) £34.99 (paperback).
    Sarah Manski.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 21, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 874-875, September 2018.
    February 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12355   open full text
  • Deserving citizenship? Exploring migrants' experiences of the ‘citizenship test’ process in the United Kingdom.
    Pierre Monforte, Leah Bassel, Kamran Khan.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Since the early 2000s several European countries have introduced language and citizenship tests as new requirements for access to long‐term residence or naturalization. The content of citizenship tests has been often presented as exclusionary in nature, in particular as it is based on the idea that access to citizenship has to be ‘deserved’. In this paper, we aim to explore the citizenship tests ‘from below’, through the focus on the experience of migrants who prepare and take the ‘Life in the UK’ test, and with particular reference to how they relate to the idea of ‘deservingness’. Through a set of in‐depth interviews with migrants in two different cities (Leicester and London), we show that many of them use narratives in which they distinguish between the ‘deserving citizens’ and the ‘undeserving Others’ when they reflect upon their experience of becoming citizens. In so doing, they negotiate new hierarchies of inclusion into and exclusion from citizenship, which reflect broader neo‐liberal and ethos‐based conceptions of citizenship. - 'The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView. '
    February 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12351   open full text
  • Fair chances and hard work? Families making sense of inequality and opportunity in 21st‐century Britain.
    Helene Snee, Fiona Devine.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 21, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract In British social mobility discourse, the rhetoric of fair access can obscure wider issues of social justice. While socio‐economic inequalities continue to shape young people's lives, sociological work on class dis‐identification suggests social class is less obviously meaningful as a source of individual and collective identity. This paper considers subjective understandings of the post‐16 education and employment landscape in this context, drawing on qualitative research exploring the aspirations of young men and women as they completed compulsory education in north‐west England, and the hopes their parents had for their future. It shows how unequal access to resources shaped the older generation's expectations for their children, although this was rarely articulated using the explicit language of class. Their children recognized they faced a difficult job market but embraced the idea that success was possible through hard work. Both generations drew moral boundaries and made judgments based on implicit classed discourses about undeserving others, while at the same time disavowing class identities. There was a more explicit recognition of gender inequality among the parents framed with reference to hopes for greater freedom for their daughters. Opportunities and inequalities were thus understood in complex and sometimes contradictory ways. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    February 21, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12358   open full text
  • The economy of smiles: affect, labour and the contemporary deserving poor.
    Jessica Gerrard.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 14, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper examines the affective dimensions of new forms of informal entrepreneurial work carried out in spaces of unemployment. Situating the analysis within contemporary scholarship on deservingness and on affect and labour, I shed light on the forms of entrepreneurial labour that rely upon affect‐driven economies of exchange underpinned by moral judgements of deservingness, value and worth. In particular, this paper draws on a multi‐city (Melbourne, London, San Francisco) study of homeless street press sellers (The Big Issue and Street Sheet) to explore the ways in which contemporary practices of charity and care are carried out through individualized market‐place exchanges. Sellers’ accounts of their work reveal how smiling and being (or looking) happy is a performative expectation that must be managed in the face of poverty and precarity. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    February 14, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12350   open full text
  • The collective roots and rewards of upward educational mobility.
    Shirin Shahrokni.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 02, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Drawing on in‐depth interviews with descendants of North African working‐class immigrants admitted to elite higher institutions in France, this paper investigates the under‐researched role of family dynamics in facilitating upward educational mobility and informing the experience of social ascension. It shows that concrete mobility strategies, such as authoritative parenting and close mentorship from older siblings have been deployed to enable the respondents’ educational attainment. Moreover, a set of moral resources transmitted through stories about family‐rooted aspirations and stories about post‐migration hardships and sacrifices have contributed to forging strong motivational dispositions that have facilitated school success among the respondents. These resources have further shaped the symbolic significance the interviewees associate with mobility. In contrast with the dominant individual‐centred narrative of success, for second‐generation North African immigrants, mobility represents a powerful way of ‘giving back’ to former‐generation migrants whose mobility dreams often had to be relinquished. The respondents also position themselves as role‐models for other youths of racially and socially disadvantaged backgrounds: their mobility pathways are described as vital for collective advancements particularly through the sense of minority empowerment these generate. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    February 02, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12349   open full text
  • Do terrorist attacks affect ethnic discrimination in the labour market? Evidence from two randomized field experiments.
    Gunn Elisabeth Birkelund, Tak Wing Chan, Elisabeth Ugreninov, Arnfinn H. Midtbøen, Jon Rogstad.
    British Journal of Sociology. January 24, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract Terrorist attacks are known to influence public opinion. But do they also change behaviour? We address this question by comparing the results of two identical randomized field experiments on ethnic discrimination in hiring that we conducted in Oslo. The first experiment was conducted before the 2011 terrorist attacks in Norway; the second experiment was conducted after the attacks. In both experiments, applicants with a typical Pakistani name were significantly less likely to get a job interview compared to those with a typical Norwegian name. But the ethnic gap in call‐back rates were very similar in the two experiments. Thus, Pakistanis in Norway still experienced the same level of discrimination, despite claims that Norwegians have become more positive about migrants after the far‐right, anti‐migrant terrorist attacks of 2011. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    January 24, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12344   open full text
  • Yuri Slezkine, The House of Government: A Saga of the Russian Revolution 2017 Princeton University Press 1128pp £29.95 (Hardback).
    Charles Turner.
    British Journal of Sociology. January 23, 2018
    --- - - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 3, Page 865-867, September 2018.
    January 23, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12348   open full text
  • The struggle for Via Bologna street market: crisis, racial denial and speaking back to power in Naples Italy.
    Antonia Dawes.
    British Journal of Sociology. January 10, 2018
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper is based on ethnographic research conducted with migrant and Italian street vendors in Naples, southern Italy, in 2012. It tells the story of Via Bologna market which was nearly closed down by the City Hall at the time. Naples is a city where issues of poverty and unemployment pre‐date and have been exacerbated by manifold narratives of crisis now unfolding across Europe regarding the economy, political legitimacy, security and migration. Street markets have always been an important and visible economic survival strategy for both Neapolitans and migrants there. This article shows how the Via Bologna street vendors appropriated and adapted discourses about crisis to form their own cosmopolitan social movement that halted the closure of the market. It argues that, in the age of globalized migration, the multilingual nature of such collective action is central to understanding social struggles that must be organized between marginalized groups of people divided by race, religion, politics and legal status. This, frequently ambiguous, transcultural solidarity speaks back against a mainstream post‐racial discourse – often articulated by the Neapolitan street vendors at the market – that would reduce the complexity of such collective action to questions of poverty and class struggle. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    January 10, 2018   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12347   open full text
  • Agency in advanced liberal services: grounding sociological knowledge in homeless people's accounts.
    Cameron Parsell, Andrew Clarke.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 29, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper aims to understand how people who are homeless respond to advanced liberal social services that endeavour to promote their autonomy and responsible actions. We prioritize the experiences and positions of people who are homeless, and what agentic action means to them. Sociological literature is selective about what accounts are deemed agentic. Agency is associated with accounts that resist or subvert dominant neoliberal framings of homelessness as failure of individuals. When people experiencing homelessness or poverty themselves foreground autonomy or responsibility, sociologists treat them as cultural dopes who have internalized neoliberal discourse. Our analysis is driven by an ethnographic study in an Australian homelessness shelter. We demonstrate how people who are homeless neither outright reject nor completely embrace advanced liberal practices to influence their actions and promote autonomy. People engaged in relational reasoning. Paternalist and advanced liberal social services were both lauded and rejected for their capacities and limitations to realize a good life. We contribute to the discussion for sociology to value people's accounts and experiences, rather than broader social process explaining their accounts. From the perspectives of people who are homeless, we show that just because something appears neoliberal does not mean it should be automatically rejected. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12346   open full text
  • A struggle on two fronts: boundary drawing in the lower region of the social space and the symbolic market for ‘down‐to‐earthness’.
    Vegard Jarness, Magne Paalgard Flemmen.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 26, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract In this article we use qualitative interviews to examine how Norwegians possessing low volumes of cultural and economic capital demarcate themselves symbolically from the lifestyles of those above and below them in social space. In downward boundary drawing, a range of types of people are regarded as inferior because of perceived moral and aesthetic deficiencies. In upward boundary drawing, anti‐elitist sentiments are strong: people practising resource‐demanding lifestyles are viewed as harbouring ‘snobbish’ and ‘elitist’ attitudes. However, our analysis suggests that contemporary forms of anti‐elitism are far from absolute, as symbolic expressions of privilege are markedly less challenged if they are parcelled in a ‘down‐to‐earth’ attitude. Previous studies have shown attempts by the privileged to downplay differences in cross‐class encounters, accompanied by displays of openness and down‐to‐earthness. Our findings suggest that there is in fact a symbolic ‘market’ for such performances in the lower region of social space. This cross‐class sympathy, we argue, helps naturalize, and thereby legitimize, class inequalities. The implications of this finding are outlined with reference to current scholarly debates about politics and populism, status and recognition and intersections between class and gender in the structuring of social inequalities. The article also contributes key methodological insights into the mapping of symbolic boundaries. Challenging Lamont's influential framework, we demonstrate that there is a need for a more complex analytical strategy rather than simply measuring the ‘relative salience’ of various boundaries in terms of their occurrence in qualitative interview data. In distinguishing analytically between usurpationary and exclusionary boundary strategies, we show that moral boundaries in particular can take on qualitatively different forms and that subtypes of boundaries are sometimes so tightly intertwined that separating them to measure their relative salience would neglect the complex ways in which they combine to engender both aversion to and sympathies for others. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 26, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12345   open full text
  • The diversification of inequality.
    Malcolm Brynin, Simonetta Longhi, Wouter Zwysen.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 22, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract We examine intersectionality on the basis of increasingly complex interactions between gender and ethnic groups, which we argue derive from the growing diversity of these groups. While we critique the concept of superdiversity, we suggest that increased diversity leads to a ‘diversification of inequality’. This is characterised by an increasing incidence of inequality through the growth in migration and of the size and variety of ethnic minorities, and by a weakening of specific inequalities. We demonstrate this using the Labour Force Survey and conclude that there is a clear diversification of inequality but also that ethnicity is a more potent source of inequality than gender. Diversity also increases the reach of inequality through producing and increasing the number of intersections. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12341   open full text
  • Science or liberal arts? Cultural capital and college major choice in China.
    Anning Hu, Xiaogang Wu.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 19, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Previous studies on major East Asian societies such as Japan and Korea generally fail to find a strong effect of cultural capital in educational inequality, partly due to the characteristic extreme focus on standardized test and curriculum. This study shifts attention to the horizontal stratification of education by investigating the association between family background, cultural capital, and college major choice in contemporary China. Based on analysis of data from the Beijing College Students Panel Survey (BCSPS), we found that, on average, cultural capital significantly mediates the relationship between family background and college major preference. Those with greater endowment of cultural capital are more likely to come from socio‐economically advantaged families, and, at the same time, demonstrate a stronger propensity to major in liberal arts fields rather than science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. Further analyses reveal that the association between cultural capital and academic field choice comes into being by way of performance in the Chinese test in the national college entrance examination and of the non‐cognitive dispositions, such as self‐efficacy and self‐esteem. Our findings better our understanding of formation of the horizontal stratification of higher education. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 19, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12342   open full text
  • An investigation of social class inequalities in general cognitive ability in two British birth cohorts.
    Roxanne Connelly, Vernon Gayle.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 19, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract The ‘Flynn effect’ describes the substantial and long‐standing increase in average cognitive ability test scores, which has been observed in numerous psychological studies. Flynn makes an appeal for researchers to move beyond psychology's standard disciplinary boundaries and to consider sociological contexts, in order to develop a more comprehensive understanding of cognitive inequalities. In this article we respond to this appeal and investigate social class inequalities in general cognitive ability test scores over time. We analyse data from the National Child Development Study (1958) and the British Cohort Study (1970). These two British birth cohorts are suitable nationally representative large‐scale data resources for studying inequalities in general cognitive ability. We observe a large parental social class effect, net of parental education and gender in both cohorts. The overall finding is that large social class divisions in cognitive ability can be observed when children are still at primary school, and similar patterns are observed in each cohort. Notably, pupils with fathers at the lower end of the class structure are at a distinct disadvantage. This is a disturbing finding and it is especially important because cognitive ability is known to influence individuals later in the lifecourse. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 19, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12343   open full text
  • The logic of counterfactual analysis in case‐study explanation.
    James Mahoney, Rodrigo Barrenechea.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 19, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract In this paper, we develop a set‐theoretic and possible worlds approach to counterfactual analysis in case‐study explanation. Using this approach, we first consider four kinds of counterfactuals: necessary condition counterfactuals, SUIN condition counterfactuals, sufficient condition counterfactuals, and INUS condition counterfactuals. We explore the distinctive causal claims entailed in each, and conclude that necessary condition and SUIN condition counterfactuals are the most useful types for hypothesis assessment in case‐study research. We then turn attention to the development of a rigorous understanding of the ‘minimal‐rewrite’ rule, linking this rule to insights from set theory about the relative importance of necessary conditions. We show why, logically speaking, a comparative analysis of two necessary condition counterfactuals will tend to favour small events and contingent happenings. A third section then presents new tools for specifying the level of generality of the events in a counterfactual. We show why and how the goals of formulating empirically important versus empirically plausible counterfactuals stand in tension with one another. Finally, we use our framework to link counterfactual analysis to causal sequences, which in turn provides advantages for conducting counterfactual projections. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 19, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12340   open full text
  • Talking about time: temporality and motivation for international Christian humanitarian actors in South Sudan.
    Amy Kaler, John R. Parkins.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 19, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract We investigate ways in which international evangelical Christian humanitarians talk about time as they engaged in humanitarian assistance and development work in South Sudan. Our focus on Christian development work is motivated by a desire to understand how and why people persevere in humanitarian work and reconcile seemingly impossible circumstances and to further elaborate sociological conceptions of time as experienced by people in their own lives. We argue that their faith commitments produce ways of understanding time and causality which make possible their attachment to risky and dangerous work. Our work is based on in‐depth interviews with people who work or have recently worked for Christian faith‐based organizations in South Sudan (n = 30). Drawing on Tavory and Eliasoph's () concepts of life narratives and life projects, we treat our participants as culturally competent actors who skilfully construct their stories through drawing on collectively shared faith‐inflected ideas about temporality and causation. We argue that these ideas represent an important resource for getting through the risks, challenges and uncertainties of doing humanitarian work in complex crises. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 19, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12335   open full text
  • Conjugal intimacy, gender and modernity in contemporary China.
    Jieyu Liu, Eona Bell, Jiayu Zhang.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 15, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract The new generation of modernity theorists have forecast the democratization of gender relations within intimate relationships in late‐modern times. Chinese society has undergone rapid and dramatic changes in its unique trajectory of political, social and economic reform. Using China as an example of a region which has been largely ignored in contemporary social theory, this article enters the debate to contest the extent to which conjugal relationships are democratized in line with modernity. We further test the assertion that modern marriages are characterized by increased self‐disclosure and communication between partners. Data from a national survey on Chinese families is analysed in relation to the level of self‐disclosure between husbands and wives; gender division of housework; household decision‐making; and home ownership. We highlight the impact of gender, cohort and location (urban, rural or migrant) on experiences of modernity and draw attention to the material, social and cultural factors which continue to shape conjugal relations in contemporary Chinese society. Based on our findings, we contest the argument that disclosing intimacy between intimate partners is a defining characteristic of modern relationships, and suggest that other social factors may condition degrees of self‐disclosure in marriage. Similarly, we question the extent to which heterosexual conjugal equality is attained: the cultural practices and values of patrilineal family organization, together with material circumstances, continue to influence marital relations in China. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 15, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12338   open full text
  • Muslim gay men: identity conflict and politics in a Muslim majority nation.
    Nassim Hamdi, Monia Lachheb, Eric Anderson.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 08, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract While a number of investigations have examined how gay Muslim men view homosexuality in relation to religious Western homophobia, this research constitutes the first account of the experiences of self‐identified gay men living in an African, Muslim nation, where same‐sex sex is both illegal and actively persecuted. We interviewed 28 gay men living in Tunisia in order to understand how they assimilate their sexual, religious and ethnic identities within a highly homophobic culture. Utilizing notions of homoerasure and homohysteria (McCormack and Eric Anderson ,b), and examining the intersection of identity conflict and new social movement theory, we highlight four strategies that participants use to negotiate the dissonance of living with conflicting identities in a context of religious homophobia: (1) privileging their Islamic identities and rejecting homosexuality as a legitimate sexual identity; (2) rejecting Islam and accepting homosexuality as a legitimate sexual identity; (3) interpreting Islam to be supportive of homosexuality; and (4) creating a non‐penetrative homosexuality to be compatible with literal Qur'anic interpretations. We discuss the multiple difficulties these men face in relation to religious intolerance and ethnic heteronormativity, and reflect upon the possibilities and obstacles of using Western identity politics towards the promotion of social justice within a framework of growing homohysteria. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 08, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12334   open full text
  • The limits of the decentred state: the case of policing insurance claims fraud.
    Anders Stenström.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 01, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Existing research clearly shows that the public–private divide is continuously being challenged, recast and transformed. However, this article argues that a sharp distinction between public and private continues to operate as an important norm for professionals involved in the investigation of insurance claims fraud in Sweden. It shows how power within private insurance companies and the police authority is organized around the public–private divide, which is in turn mobilized to justify repression and to give investigations legitimacy. The article indicates that the formal public–private distinction is far more thoroughly maintained than is suggested by the existing literature. Rather than challenging the centrality of state power, private insurers and the police construct, maintain and have a stake in the reproduction of a state‐centric monopoly of crime control. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    December 01, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12336   open full text
  • Pathological integration, or, how East Europeans use racism to become British.
    Jon E. Fox, Magda Mogilnicka.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 30, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract East Europeans are integrating into life in the UK. This entails learning to get along with their new neighbours, but it also involves not getting along with certain neighbours. Integration is not confined to benevolent forms of everyday cosmopolitanism, multiculturalism and conviviality; it can also include more pathological forms, like racism. Whilst integration is generally seen as desirable, the learning that it entails necessarily includes less desirable practices and norms. The aim of this article is to show how East Europeans in the UK have been acquiring specifically British competencies of racism. This doesn't mean all East Europeans are racist or they always use racism; it does mean, however, that racism is a part of the integration equation. We focus on the racist and racializing practices of Poles, Hungarians and Romanians in Bristol in the UK. These East Europeans are using racism to insert themselves more favourably into Britain's racialized status hierarchies. This is a kind of integration. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    November 30, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12337   open full text
  • Information barriers and social stratification in higher education: evidence from a field experiment.
    Giovanni Abbiati, Gianluca Argentin, Carlo Barone, Antonio Schizzerotto.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 29, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Our contribution assesses the role of information barriers for patterns of participation in Higher Education (HE) and the related social inequalities. For this purpose, we developed a large‐scale clustered randomised experiment involving over 9,000 high school seniors from 62 Italian schools. We designed a counseling intervention to correct student misperceptions of the profitability of HE, that is, the costs, economic returns and chances of success of investments in different tertiary programs. We employed a longitudinal survey to test whether treated students' educational trajectories evolved differently relative to a control group. We find that, overall, treated students enrolled less often in less remunerative fields of study in favour of postsecondary vocational programmes. Most importantly, this effect varied substantially by parental social class and level of education. The shift towards vocational programmes was mainly due to the offspring of low‐educated parents; in contrast, children of tertiary graduates increased their participation in more rewarding university fields. Similarly, the redistribution from weak fields to vocational programmes mainly involved the children of the petty bourgeoisie and the working class, while upper class students invested in more rewarding university fields. We argue that the status‐maintenance model proposed by Breen and Goldthorpe can explain these socially differentiated treatment effects. Overall, our results challenge the claim that student misperceptions contribute to horizontal inequalities in access to HE. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    November 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12332   open full text
  • The moral economy of ready‐made food.
    Kathryn Wheeler.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 22, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract The aim of this paper is to develop and apply a framework to explore how moralities of consumption are constituted in and through markets. Using the case of ready‐made foods, this paper argues moral economies are comprised through interactions between micro‐, meso‐ and macro‐level processes in the form of instituted systems of provision, state regulation, collective food customs promoted though media, NGOs and lifestyle practitioners, and the everyday reflections of consumers. Building on a theoretical framework developed to understand the moral economy of work and employment (Bolton and Laaser 2013), this paper explores how markets for ready‐made food are incessantly negotiated in the context of moral ideas about cooking, femininity and individual responsibility. It focuses on ‘new’ market innovations of fresh ready‐to‐cook meal solutions and explores how these products are both a response to moralizing discourses about cooking ‘properly’, as well as an intervention into the market that offers opportunities for new moral identities to be performed. Using data gathered from interviews with food manufacturers and consumers, I advocate for a multi‐layered perspective that captures the dynamic interplay between consumers, markets and moralities of consumption. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    November 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12333   open full text
  • Outline of a sociology of decisionism.
    Gabriel Abend.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 25, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract I propose an agenda for empirical research on decision, choice, decision‐makers, and decision‐making qua social facts. Given society S, group G, or field F, I make a twofold sociological proposal. First, empirically investigate the conditions under which something—call it X—is taken to be a decision or choice, or the outcome of a decision‐making process. What must X be like? What doesn't count (besides, presumably, myotatic reflexes and blushing)? Whom or what must X be done by? What can't be a decision‐maker (besides, presumably, rocks and apples)? Second, empirically investigate how decision/choice concepts are used in everyday life, politics, business, education, law, technology, and science. What are they used for? To what extent do people understand and represent themselves and others as decision‐makers? Where do decision‐centric or “decisionist” understandings succeed? These aren't armchair, theoretical, philosophical questions, but empirical ones. Decision/choice concepts’ apparent ubiquity in contemporary societies calls for a well‐thought‐out research program on their social life and uses. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 237-264, June 2018.
    October 25, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12320   open full text
  • The new subversive geranium: some notes on the management of additional troubles in maximum security prisons.
    Alison Liebling, Ryan J. Williams.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 07, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract In this paper, we revisit King and McDermott's 1990 article on the social construction of ‘control problem’ prisoners and their management in high security prisons, in the light of our recent research on the location and building of trust in contemporary high security prisons. We examine how religious and race identities are now deeply implicated in the construction of risk, and we describe the procedures for and some of the consequences of managing the new risks of radicalization and extremist violence in prison. The analysis is based on observations and interviews with staff and prisoners in two main and two supplementary maximum‐security prisons in England and Wales. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    October 07, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12310   open full text
  • The class pictures in citizens’ minds.
    Joshua Robison, Rune Stubager.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 07, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Social class has traditionally played a key role in explaining social behaviour and cognition. However, recent analyses have been dominated by the view that the relevance of class for behaviour has dwindled in advanced industrial societies. We contest this view by focusing on the subjective components of class consciousness. Using a national survey of Danish citizens, we show that individuals continue to hold meaningful conceptions of classes, to identify with them and, moreover, to perceive substantial levels of differences between them with these latter beliefs being strongly structured by respondent class identification. These results are all the more intriguing because they stem from a high affluence/low inequality national context that should be a particularly good case for failing to find such rich class perceptions. - The British Journal of Sociology, EarlyView.
    October 07, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12313   open full text
  • Reluctant entrepreneurs: musicians and entrepreneurship in the ‘new’ music industry.
    Jo Haynes, Lee Marshall.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 18, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Changing labour conditions in the creative industries – with celebrations of autonomy and entrepreneurialism intertwined with increasing job insecurity, portfolio careers and short‐term, project‐based contracts – are often interpreted as heralding changes to employment relations more broadly. The position of musicians’ labour in relation to these changes is unclear, however, given that these kinds of conditions have defined musicians’ working practices over much longer periods of time (though they may have intensified due to well‐documented changes to the music industry brought about by digitization and disintermediation). Musicians may thus be something of a barometer of current trends, as implied in the way that the musically derived label ‘gig economy’ is being used to describe the spread of precarious working conditions to broader sections of the population. This article, drawing on original qualitative research that investigated the working practices of musicians, explores one specific aspect of these conditions: whether musicians are self‐consciously entrepreneurial towards their work and audience. We found that, while the musicians in our study are routinely involved in activities that could be construed as entrepreneurial, generally they were reluctant to label themselves as entrepreneurs. In part this reflected understandings of entrepreneurialism as driven by profit‐seeking but it also reflected awareness that being a popular musician has always involved business and commercial dimensions. Drawing on theoretical conceptions of entrepreneurship developed by Joseph Schumpeter we highlight how the figure of the entrepreneur and the artist/musician share much in common and reflect various aspects of romantic individualism. Despite this, there are also some notable differences and we conclude that framing musicians’ labour as entrepreneurial misrepresents their activities through an overemphasis on the economic dimensions of their work at the expense of the cultural. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 459-482, June 2018.
    September 18, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12286   open full text
  • Declining social mobility? Evidence from five linked censuses in England and Wales 1971–2011.
    Franz Buscha, Patrick Sturgis.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 18, 2017
    In this paper we add to the existing evidence base on recent trends in inter‐generational social mobility in England and Wales. We analyse data from the Office for National Statistics Longitudinal Study (ONS‐LS), which links individual records from the five decennial censuses between 1971 and 2011. The ONS‐LS is an excellent data resource for the study of social mobility because it has a very large sample size, excellent population coverage and low rates of nonresponse and attrition across waves. Additionally, the structure of the study means that we can observe the occupations of LS‐members' parents when they were children and follow their own progress in the labour market at regular intervals into middle age. Counter to widespread prevailing beliefs, our results show evidence of a small but significant increase in social fluidity between 1950s and the 1980s for both men and women.
    September 18, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12275   open full text
  • Class categories and the subjective dimension of class: the case of Denmark.
    Gitte Sommer Harrits, Helene Helboe Pedersen.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 15, 2017
    Class relations have been proven to affect various aspects of social life, even in modern individualized societies. However, following claims on individualization and the so‐called ‘death of class’ thesis, studying the subjective dimension of class – that is, the way individuals perceive of class relations and their own position within them – has gone out of style. We argue that even in equalized societies, subjective class perceptions may still influence attitudes and behaviour as they evolve to fit modern class relations. To explore the existence as well as structure and content of perceived social classes, this article investigates how people describe society and social groups in focus group discussions. We find that groups in different positions in terms of education and economy all tend to apply hierarchical class categories to describe Danish society, which is normally seen as one of the most equal societies and political systems in the world. In addition, we find that economic resources serve as a baseline for the hierarchical ordering, often supplemented with notions of education, lifestyle and/or occupational profile. Even though people are somewhat uncomfortable with the notion of class, their descriptions of Danish society and classes are surprisingly similar within and across groups. We conclude that not only do class relations matter; people are also highly aware of the existing classes and able to position themselves and others according to their notion of classes.
    September 15, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12282   open full text
  • Social mobility and the well‐being of individuals.
    Tak Wing Chan.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 12, 2017
    Several papers published in recent years have revived interest in Sorokin's dissociative thesis: the view that intergenerational social mobility has detrimental effects on the social relationships and wellbeing of individuals. In this paper, I test the dissociative thesis using data from the British Household Panel Survey and Understanding Society. On a wide range of indicators that measure participation in civic associations, contact with parents, close personal relationships, social support, subjective wellbeing, etc. individuals who have achieved long‐range upward mobility (i.e. those who move from working class origin to salariat destination) tend to fare better than those who are immobile in the working class. Those who have experienced long‐range downward mobility (moving from salariat origin to working class destination) do about as well as second‐generation members of the working class. Overall, there is no support for Sorokin's thesis.
    September 12, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12285   open full text
  • What has become of critique? Reassembling sociology after Latour.
    Tom Mills.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 06, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract This paper offers a defence of sociology through an engagement with Actor Network Theory (ANT) and particularly the critique of ‘critical’ and politically engaged social science developed by Bruno Latour. It argues that ANT identifies some weaknesses in more conventional sociology and social theory, and suggests that ‘critical’ and ‘public’ orientated sociologists can learn from the analytical precision and ethnographic sensibilities that characterize ANT as a framework of analysis and a research programme. It argues, however, that Latour et al. have too hastily dispensed with ‘critique’ in favour of a value neutral descriptive sociology, and that the symmetrical and horizontalist approach adopted in ANT is particularly ill‐suited to the development of scientific knowledge about social structures. It argues that a more straightforwardly realist sociology would share many of the strengths of ANT whilst being better able to interrogate, empirically and normatively, the centres of contemporary social power. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 286-305, June 2018.
    September 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12306   open full text
  • Living in the city: school friendships, diversity and the middle classes.
    Carol Vincent, Sarah Neal, Humera Iqbal.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 04, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Much of the literature on the urban middle classes describes processes of both affiliation (often to the localities) and disaffiliation (often from some of the non‐middle‐class residents). In this paper, we consider this situation from a different position, drawing on research exploring whether and how children and adults living in diverse localities develop friendships with those different to themselves in terms of social class and ethnicity. This paper focuses on the interviews with the ethnically diverse, but predominantly white British, middle‐class parent participants, considering their attitudes towards social and cultural difference. We emphasize the importance of highlighting inequalities that arise from social class and its intersection with ethnicity in analyses of complex urban populations. The paper's contribution is, first, to examine processes of clustering amongst the white British middle‐class parents, particularly in relation to social class. Second, we contrast this process, and its moments of reflection and unease, with the more deliberate and purposeful efforts of one middle‐class, Bangladeshi‐origin mother who engages in active labour to facilitate relationships across social and ethnic difference. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 352-371, June 2018.
    September 04, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12296   open full text
  • Back to Hegel? On Gillian Rose's critique of sociological reason.
    Brian W. Fuller.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 22, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Thirty‐five years ago, Gillian Rose articulated a significant critique of classical sociological reason, emphasizing its relationship to its philosophical forebears. In a series of works, but most significantly in her Hegel contra Sociology, Rose worked to specify the implications of sociology's failure, both in its critical Marxist and its ‘scientific’ forms, to move beyond Kant and to fully come to terms with the thought of Hegel. In this article, I unpack and explain the substance of her criticisms, developing the necessary Hegelian philosophical background on which she founded them. I argue that Rose's attempted recuperation of ‘speculative reason’ for social theory remains little understood, despite its continued relevance to contemporary debates concerning the nature and scope of sociological reason. As an illustration, I employ Rose to critique Chernilo's recent call for a more philosophically sophisticated sociology. From the vantage point of Rose, this particular account of a ‘philosophical sociology’ remains abstract and rooted in the neo‐Kantian contradictions that continue to characterize sociology. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 265-285, June 2018.
    August 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12281   open full text
  • Motives of corporate political donations: industry regulation, subjective judgement and the origins of pragmatic and ideological corporations.
    Nicholas M. Harrigan.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 21, 2017
    What motivates corporate political action? Are corporations motivated by their own narrow economic self‐interest; are they committed to pursuing larger class interests; or are corporations instruments for status groups to pursue their own agendas? Sociologists have been divided over this question for much of the last century. This paper introduces a novel case – that of Australia – and an extensive dataset of over 1,500 corporations and 7,500 directors. The paper attempts to understand the motives of corporate political action by examining patterns of corporate political donations. Using statistical modelling, supported by qualitative evidence, the paper argues that, in the Australian case, corporate political action is largely motivated by the narrow economic self‐interest of individual corporations. Firms’ interests are, consistent with regulatory environment theory, defined by the nature of government regulation in their industry: those in highly regulated industries (such as banking) and those dependent on government support (such as defence) tend to adopt a strategy of hedging their political support, and make bipartisan donations (to both major parties). In contrast, firms facing hostile regulation (such as timber or mining), and those without strong dependence on state support (such as small companies) tend to adopt a strategy of conservative partisanship, and make conservative‐only donations. This paper argues that regulatory environment theory needs to be modified to incorporate greater emphasis on the subjective political judgements of corporations facing hostile regulation: a corporation's adoption of conservative partisanship or hedging is not just a product of the objective regulation they face, but also whether corporate leaders judge such regulation as politically inevitable or something that can be resisted. Such a judgement is highly subjective, introducing a dynamic and unpredictable dimension to corporate political action.
    August 21, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12270   open full text
  • Social space and cultural class divisions: the forms of capital and contemporary lifestyle differentiation.
    Magne Flemmen, Vegard Jarness, Lennart Rosenlund.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 17, 2017
    In this article, we address whether and how contemporary social classes are marked by distinct lifestyles. We assess the model of the social space, a novel approach to class analysis pioneered by Bourdieu's Distinction. Although pivotal in Bourdieu's work, this model is too often overlooked in later research, making its contemporary relevance difficult to assess. We redress this by using the social space as a framework through which to study the cultural manifestation of class divisions in lifestyle differences in contemporary Norwegian society. Through a Multiple Correspondence Analysis (MCA) of unusually rich survey data, we reveal a structure strikingly similar to the model in Distinction, with a primary dimension of the volume of capital, and a secondary dimension of the composition of capital. While avoiding the substantialist fallacy of predefined notions of ‘highbrow’ and ‘lowbrow’ tastes, we explore how 168 lifestyle items map onto this social space. This reveals distinct classed lifestyles according to both dimensions of the social space. The lifestyles of the upper classes are distinctly demanding in terms of resources. Among those rich in economic capital, this manifests itself in a lifestyle which involves a quest for excitement, and which is bodily oriented and expensive. For their counterparts rich in cultural capital, a more ascetic and intellectually oriented lifestyle manifests itself, demanding of resources in the sense of requiring symbolic mastery, combining a taste for canonized, legitimate culture with more cosmopolitan and ‘popular’ items. In contrast to many studies’ descriptions of the lower classes as ‘disengaged’ and ‘inactive’, we find evidence of distinct tastes on their part. Our analysis thus affirms the validity of Bourdieu's model of social class and the contention that classes tend to take the form of status groups. We challenge dominant positions in cultural stratification research, while questioning the aptness of the metaphor of the ‘omnivore’, as well as recent analyses of ‘emerging cultural capital’.
    August 17, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12295   open full text
  • The intersection of class origin and immigration background in structuring social capital: the role of transnational ties.
    Anton Andersson, Christofer Edling, Jens Rydgren.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 17, 2017
    The study investigates inequalities in access to social capital based on social class origin and immigration background and examines the role of transnational ties in explaining these differences. Social capital is measured with a position generator methodology that separates between national and transnational contacts in a sample of young adults in Sweden with three parental backgrounds: at least one parent born in Iran or Yugoslavia, or two Sweden‐born parents. The results show that having socioeconomically advantaged parents is associated with higher levels of social capital. Children of immigrants are found to have a greater access to social capital compared to individuals with native background, and the study shows that this is related to transnational contacts, parents’ education and social class in their country of origin. Children of immigrants tend to have more contacts abroad, while there is little difference in the amount of contacts living in Sweden across the three groups. It is concluded that knowledge about immigration group resources help us predict its member's social capital, but that the analysis also needs to consider how social class trajectories and migration jointly structure national and transnational contacts.
    August 17, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12289   open full text
  • Racial entanglements and sociological confusions: repudiating the rehabilitation of integration.
    Sivamohan Valluvan.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 14, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract In line with the broader nationalist advances currently remaking the Western political landscape, the concept of integration has witnessed a marked rehabilitation. Whilst many influential critiques of the sociology of integration are already available, this article contests the concept's renewed purchase through addressing its own internal incoherence. Based on research in Stockholm, this critique concerns the relationship between ethnic identity and cultural integration. It will be argued that integration and the production of difference are intertwined, entangled dualities, and far from being a benign entanglement, this duality is premised on the force and reach of everyday civic racisms. Of pivotal and unique analytical significance here is the observation that racism should not only be considered an exogenous process that impedes integration, but as a multifaceted phenomenon folded into integration. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 436-458, June 2018.
    August 14, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12284   open full text
  • The Madoffization of Irish society: from Ponzi finance to sociological critique.
    Lee F. Monaghan, Micheal O'Flynn.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 07, 2017
    Financialization and neoliberal policy created the Celtic Tiger. This economic ‘miracle’ furthered creditors’ and property developers’ speculative interests, leading to an unstable financial pyramid that eventually imploded in 2008 with catastrophic consequences for Irish society. Using the sociological imagination as social critique, this paper offers a lens on fictitious capital and Ponzi finance in the context of Ireland's boom and bust. Critique is advanced using the Madoffization of society thesis, a sociological heuristic that draws formal comparisons between Bernie Madoff's US$65 billion Ponzi scheme, which collapsed in 2008, and financialized capitalism. The Madoff case exhibits five main elements or forms which, it has been argued, underlie the varying content of life on a much broader scale: accumulation by debt expansion, mass deception, efforts to maintain secrecy and silence, obfuscation, and scapegoating. In conclusion, a crucial difference between the Madoff case and the Madoffization of Irish society is underscored. Discussion also moves from critique to hope amidst calls to renew sociology and transform financialized capitalism.
    August 07, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12287   open full text
  • Breaking the taboo: a history of monetary financing in Canada, 1930–1975.
    Josh Ryan‐Collins.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 07, 2017
    Monetary financing – the funding of state expenditure via the creation of new money rather than through taxation or borrowing – has become a taboo policy instrument in advanced economies. It is generally associated with dangerously high inflation and/or war. Relatedly, a key institutional feature of modern independent central banks is that they are not obligated to support government expenditure via money creation. Since the financial crisis of 2007–2008, however, unorthodox monetary policies, in particular quantitative easing, coupled with stagnant growth and high levels of public and private debt have led to questions over the monetary financing taboo. Debates on the topic have so far been mainly theoretical with little attention to the social and political dynamics of historical instances of monetary financing. This paper analyses one of the most significant twentieth‐century cases: Canada from the period after the Great Depression up until the monetarist revolution of the 1970s. The period was a successful one for the Canadian economy, with high growth and employment and manageable inflation. It offers some interesting insights into the relationship between states and central banks and present‐day discussions around the governance of money creation.
    August 07, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12278   open full text
  • Heteronomy in the arts field: state funding and British arts organizations.
    Victoria D. Alexander.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 25, 2017
    For Bourdieu, the field of cultural production is comprised of an autonomous and a heteronomous sector. A heteronomous sector is one that is interpenetrated by the commercial field. I discuss an arena that, until recently, was part of the relatively autonomous sector in the field of cultural production – the supported arts sector in the United Kingdom – and argue that it became more heteronomous, due to the penetration by the state. Heteronomy due to the commercial field is present but secondary to, and driven by, the actions of the state. Political parties’ attempts to diffuse and legitimate a particular economic ideology have led to state demands that arts institutions adopt neoliberal business practices in exchange for funding. Government giving to the arts, previously at arm's length, proved to be a Faustian bargain that demanded significant repayment in the form of lost autonomy. Coercive pressures from the state, enacted over time, show how the domination of one field over another can occur, even when the domination is resisted.
    July 25, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12283   open full text
  • Becoming independent: political participation and youth transitions in the Scottish referendum.
    Maddie Breeze, Hugo Gorringe, Lynn Jamieson, Michael Rosie.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 25, 2017
    Sociological debates on youth engagement with electoral politics play out against a backdrop of supposed ‘decline’ in civic participation (e.g. Putnam , Norris, ), in turn contextualized by theories of individualization in ‘late’ or ‘reflexive’ modernity (Beck, Giddens). However, the enfranchisement of 16 and 17 year olds in the 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum catalysed remarkably high levels of voter turnout among this youngest group, and was accompanied by apparently ongoing political engagement. We explored this engagement among a strategic sample of young ‘Yes’ voters, in the immediate aftermath of this exceptional political event. Analysis of qualitative interview data generated an unanticipated finding; that interviewees narrated their political engagement biographically, articulated their referendum participation reflexively, and located their new political ideas, allegiances and actions in the context of their own transitions to ‘independent’ adulthood. This inspired us to rethink young people's political engagement in relation to youth transitions. Doing so enables a synthesis of divergent strands in the sociology of youth, and offers new insights into the combinations of ‘personal’ agentic and ‘political’ structural factors involved in young people's politicization.
    July 25, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12288   open full text
  • ‘I just don't want to connect my life with this occupation’: working‐class young men, manual labour, and social mobility in contemporary Russia.
    Charlie Walker.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 18, 2017
    A key strand in the Western literature on working‐class masculinities focuses on whether young men are capable of the feminized performances apparently required of them in new service economies. However, the wider literature on processes of neoliberalization – emphasizing the ‘hollowing out’ of labour markets, the cultural devaluation of lower‐skilled forms of employment, and the pathologization of working‐class lives – would suggest that it is as much a classed as a gendered transformation that is demanded of young men leaving school with few qualifications. This dimension of neoliberalization is highlighted by ethnographic data exploring the experiences and subjectivities of young workers in St Petersburg, Russia, where traditional forms of manual labour have not given way to ‘feminized’ work, but have become materially and symbolically impoverished, and are perceived as incapable of supporting the wider transition into adult independence. In this context, young workers attempt to emulate new forms of ‘successful masculinity’ connected with novel service sector professions and the emergent higher education system, despite the unlikelihood of overcoming a range of structural and cultural barriers. These acquiescent, individualized responses indicate that, while ways of being a man are apparently being liberated from old constraints amongst the more privileged, neoliberalization narrows the range of subject positions available to working‐class young men.
    July 18, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12299   open full text
  • Everyday territories: homelessness, outreach work and city space.
    Robin James Smith, Tom Hall.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 18, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract This article develops a situational approach to understanding urban public life and, in particular, the production of urban territories. Our aim is to examine the ways in which city space might be understood as comprising multiple, shifting, mobile and rhythmed territories. We argue that such territories are best understood through attending to their everyday production and negotiation, rather than handling territory as an a priori construct. We develop this argument from the particular case of the street‐level politics of homelessness and street care. The experience of street homelessness and the provision of care in the public spaces of the city is characterised by precarious territorial claims made and lost. We describe some of the ways in which care work with rough sleepers is itself precarious; ‘homeless’, in lacking a distinct setting in which it might get done. Indeed, outreach work takes place within and affirms homeless territories. The affirmation of territory is shown to be central to the relationship developed between the workers and their rough sleeping clients. We also show, however, the ways in which outreach workers operate on territory not their own, twice over. Outreach work is precarious in that it is practised within, and can run counter to, other territorial productions in which the experience of urban need and the work and politics of care are entangled. In sum, this article aims to move beyond static and binary understandings by developing a mobile and situational approach to city space which recognises the intensive yet overlooked work of territorial production. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 372-390, June 2018.
    July 18, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12280   open full text
  • Are postgraduate qualifications the ‘new frontier of social mobility’?
    Paul Wakeling, Daniel Laurison.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 12, 2017
    We investigate the relationship between social origin, postgraduate degree attainment, and occupational outcomes across five British age‐group cohorts. We use recently‐available UK Labour Force Survey data to conduct a series of logistic regressions of postgraduate (masters or doctorate) degree attainment among those with first degrees, with controls for measures of degree classification, degree subject, age, gender, ethnicity and national origin. We find a marked strengthening of the effect of class origin on degree‐ and occupational attainment across age cohorts. While for older generations there is little or no difference by class origin in the rates at which first‐degree graduates attain postgraduate degrees, those with working‐class‐origins in the youngest age‐group are only about 28 per cent as likely to obtain a postgraduate degree when compared with their peers from privileged origins. Moreover, social origin matters more for occupational destination, even among those with postgraduate degrees, for those in younger age groups. These findings demonstrate the newly important, and increasing, role of postgraduate degrees in reproducing socio‐economic inequality in the wake of the substantial expansion of undergraduate and postgraduate education. Our findings lend some support to the Maximally Maintained Inequality thesis, suggesting that gains in equality of access to first‐degrees are indeed at risk from postgraduate expansion.
    July 12, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12277   open full text
  • Why have relative rates of class mobility become more equal among women in Britain?
    Erzsébet Bukodi, John H. Goldthorpe, Heather Joshi, Lorraine Waller.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 12, 2017
    In a previous paper it has been shown that across three cohorts of men and women born in Britain in 1946, 1958 and 1970 a gender difference exists in regard to relative rates of class mobility. For men these rates display an essential stability but for women they become more equal. The aim of the present paper is to shed light on the causes of this trend—or, that is, of increasing social fluidity—among women. We begin by considering a refined version of the perverse fluidity hypothesis: that is, one that proposes that part‐time work leads to increasing downward worklife mobility among women that also entails downward intergenerational mobility and thus promotes greater fluidity. We do in fact find that the increase in fluidity is very largely, if not entirely, confined to women who have had at least one period of part‐time work. However, a more direct test of the hypothesis is not supportive. We are then led to investigate whether it is not that part‐time working itself is the crucial factor but rather that women who subsequently work part‐time already differ from those who do not at entry into employment. We find that eventual full‐ and part‐timers do not differ in their class origins nor, in any systematic way, in their educational qualifications. But there is a marked and increasing difference in the levels of employment at which they make their labour market entry. Eventual part‐timers are more likely than eventual full‐timers to enter in working‐class positions, regardless of their class origins and qualifications. Insofar as these women are from more advantaged origins, they would appear not to seek to exploit their advantages to the same extent as do full‐timers in order to advance their own work careers. And it is, then, in the downward mobility accepted by these women—who increase in number across the cohorts—that we would locate the main source of the weakening association between class origins and destinations that is revealed among women at large.
    July 12, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12274   open full text
  • Belonging across the lifetime: Time and self in Mass Observation accounts.
    Vanessa May.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 12, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Our sense of belonging rarely stands still, yet the research literature has hitherto paid little attention to the temporal nature of belonging. Based on an analysis of 62 Mass Observation Project (MOP) accounts written by people living in the UK aged from their 20s to their 90s, this paper argues that as people age, how they locate belonging in time shifts. This has to do with changing concerns related to belonging, but also to metaphysical issues of temporality and mortality, namely how people experience their own finite lifetime. The paper thus offers an illustrative example of how time can be empirically researched in sociology, with a particular focus on the important role that the future plays in how people construct their ‘functional present’ (Mead ). The central argument put forward is that time itself can be an important source of belonging, but one that is unequally accessible to people of different ages because of contemporary cultural scripts that present life as a linear progression into the future and construct the future as a more meaningful temporal horizon than the past. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 306-322, June 2018.
    July 12, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12276   open full text
  • ‘Hidden identities’: perceptions of sexual identity in Beijing.
    Toby Miles‐Johnson, Yurong Wang.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 08, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract This article draws upon responses given by volunteers who work in the Beijing LGBT Centre regarding perceptions of sexual identity, and how Chinese culture affects hidden or open sexual identities of Chinese lesbian and gay people in this region. The insights gained from those working carefully to create social change offers an important and original contribution to the field of gay and lesbian studies in China. The findings indicate the volunteers at the Beijing LGBT Centre are frustrated by the lack of acceptance of non‐heterosexual relationships among Chinese culture and society, and by the disregard of lesbian gay and bisexual (LGB) people by the Chinese government. The findings also illustrate stigmatization of homosexuality in China is enacted in structural terms (such as in the lack of policy, legislation and positive endorsement by governmental and socio‐political organizations), public expression (such as negative attitudes, beliefs or reactions towards LGB people) and internalized repression (through fear of stigmatization, and subsequent abuse due to negative societal attitudes and discrimination). Influenced by the Chinese tradition of conforming to group values, the findings from this study show that volunteers at the Beijing LGBT Centre believe LGB people in China are generally hesitant to disclose their sexual identities, and reject the idea that there had been a collective shift in Chinese culture regarding increased acceptance of LGB people. It also finds volunteers at the LGBT Centre in Beijing blame Chinese culture for its lack of acceptance of non‐heterosexual relationships, and state stigmatization of homosexuality in China is due to deep‐rooted cultural homophobia. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 323-351, June 2018.
    July 08, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12279   open full text
  • Reframing sociologies of ethnicity and migration in encounters with Chinese London.
    Caroline Knowles.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 13, 2017
    In this paper I argue that the intersecting sociologies of ethnicity and migration work from a series of interconnected blind spots hindering effective analysis of the current UK situation. Both operate analytically within the limitations of an ‘immigrant problem’ framework; are overinvested in state agendas; privilege a nation state analysis; are narrowly focused on distributions of migrant bodies, and on receiving, at the expense of sending, contexts. Exploring these limitations with data derived from a modest small‐scale qualitative study of young Chinese migrants in London, I argue for a reframing along four dimensions. Firstly, in an era of elite migration, sociology could reach beyond its immigrant problem framework and open up to a broader range of UK migrant ethnicities and circumstances. Secondly, a stronger focus on cities as the scale on which lives are lived, and through which diverse streams of translocal activity are routed, would open new avenues of sociological exploration. Thirdly, including translocal activities connected with distributions of ethnic migrant bodies, such as capital transfers, would broaden its focus, taking migration and ethnicity more centrally into the analysis of globalization as one of its constituting practices. Finally, paying attention to sending, as well as arrival cities, reveals migrants’ thinking and shapes the ways in which they live, as my data shows. The Chinese are both one of the UK's neglected minorities, and one of its fastest growing populations. They are a good example of new UK migrants and they bring globalization's realignment with the rising significance of China to the UK.
    June 13, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12271   open full text
  • Does disestablishment lead to religious vitality? The case of Switzerland.
    Jörg Stolz, Mark Chaves.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 07, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Economists and sociologists of religion have claimed that religious establishment dampens religious vitality, leading to lower recruitment efforts, low attendance, declining membership within established congregations, and the ‘crowding out’ of non‐established congregations. Conversely, these authors have told us, disestablishment will lead to more religious vitality. Remarkably, even though these claims rest on the connection between establishment and the organizational and membership behaviour of local religious congregations, no research has directly examined that connection. We use the 2008 Swiss National Congregations Study as well as historical data to assess the effect of different levels of religious establishment on both established and non‐established congregations. We find that established congregations do indeed show less religious vitality than non‐established congregations. Contrary to the claims of the economic literature, however, these covariations are not caused by differences in religious establishment on the cantonal level. Both our quantitative and historical analyses show that disestablishment has not led to religious vitality for either established or non‐established congregations. The only clear effect of disestablishment is a dramatic decrease of income for established congregations. Based on quantitative and historical evidence, we suggest that differences between established and non‐established congregations are produced by differences in religious tradition and immigration flows, not by differences in levels of establishment. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 412-435, June 2018.
    June 07, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12268   open full text
  • Ethical living: relinking ethics and consumption through care in Chile and Brazil.
    Tomas Ariztia, Nurjk Agloni, Léna Pellandini‐Simányi.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 30, 2017
    --- - |2 Abstract Mainstream conceptualizations of ‘ethical consumption’ equate the notion with conscious, individual, market‐mediated choices motivated by ethical or political aims that transcend ordinary concerns. Drawing on recent sociology and anthropology of consumption literature on the links between ordinary ethics and ethical consumption, this article discusses some of the limitations of this conceptualization. Using data from 32 focus groups conducted in Chile and Brazil, we propose a conceptualization of ethical consumption that does not centre on individual, market‐mediated choices but understands it at the level of practical outcomes, which we refer to as different forms of ‘ethical living’. To do that, we argue, we need to depart from the deontological understanding of ethics that underpins mainstream approaches to ethical consumption and adopt a more consequentialist view focusing on ethical outcomes. We develop these points through describing one particular ordinary moral regime that seemed to be predominant in participants’ accounts of ethics and consumption in both Chile and Brazil: one that links consumption and ethics through care. We show that the moral regime of care leads to ‘ethical outcomes’, such as energy saving or limiting overconsumption, yet contrary to the mainstream view of ethical consumption emphasizing politicized choice expressed through markets, these result from following ordinary ethics, often through routines of practices. - The British Journal of Sociology, Volume 69, Issue 2, Page 391-411, June 2018.
    May 30, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12265   open full text
  • Mind the gap: financial London and the regional class pay gap.
    Sam Friedman, Daniel Laurison.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 29, 2017
    The hidden barriers, or ‘gender pay gap’, preventing women from earning equivalent incomes to men is well documented. Yet recent research has uncovered that, in Britain, there is also a comparable class‐origin pay gap in higher professional and managerial occupations. So far this analysis has only been conducted at the national level and it is not known whether there are regional differences within the UK. This paper uses pooled data from the 2014 and 2015 Labour Force Survey (N = 7,534) to stage a more spatially sensitive analysis that examines regional variation in the class pay gap. We find that this ‘class ceiling’ is not evenly spatially distributed. Instead it is particularly marked in Central London, where those in high‐status occupations who are from working‐class backgrounds earn, on average, £10,660 less per year than those whose parents were in higher professional and managerial employment. Finally, we inspect the Capital further to reveal that the class pay gap is largest within Central London's banking and finance sector. Challenging policy conceptions of London as the ‘engine room’ of social mobility, these findings suggest that class disadvantage within high‐status occupations is particularly acute in the Capital. The findings also underline the value of investigating regional differences in social mobility, and demonstrate how such analysis can unravel important and previously unrecognized spatial dimensions of class inequality.
    May 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12269   open full text
  • Post‐Fordist reconfigurations of gender, work and life: theory and practice.
    Breda Gray, Luigina Ciolfi, Aparecido Fabiano Pinatti de Carvalho, Anthony D'Andrea, Lisa Wixted.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 29, 2017
    Based on an in‐depth study with 56 informants (25 women and 31 men), across the ICT (information and communication technology), creative and academic sectors in one city/regional hub in Ireland, this article investigates the so‐called revolution in work/life practices associated with the post‐Fordist labour processes of the Knowledge Economy from the perspectives of workers themselves. Recent theorizations of post‐Fordist work patterns emphasize a rearranging of work and life place boundaries; a reconfiguring of work and life time boundaries; and a dissolving of the gendered boundaries of work and life (production and social reproduction) (Adkins and Dever ; Morini and Fumagalli ; Gill and Pratt ; Weeks ; Hardt and Negri ). Our findings suggest that, instead of dissolving boundaries, workers constantly struggle to draw boundaries between what counts as work and as life, and that this varies primarily in relation to gender and stage in a gendered life trajectory. Work extensification is compensated for via a perceived freedom to shape one's own life, which is articulated in terms of individualized boundary‐drawing. While younger men embraced ‘always on’ work, they also articulated anxieties about how these work habits might interfere with family aspirations. This was also true for younger women who also struggled to make time for life in the present. For mothers, boundary drawing was articulated as a necessity but was framed more in terms of personal choice by fathers. Although all participants distinguished between paid work and life as distinct sites of value, boundaries were individually drawn and resist any easy mapping of masculinity and femininity onto the domains of work and life. Instead, we argue that it is the process of boundary drawing that reveals gendered patterns. The personalized struggles of these relatively privileged middle‐class workers centre on improving the quality of their lives, but raise important questions about the political possibilities within and beyond the world of post‐Fordist labour.
    May 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12267   open full text
  • That's what friends are for: how intergroup friendships promote historically disadvantaged groups’ substantive political representation.
    Andrej Kokkonen, David Karlsson.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 16, 2017
    The interests of historically disadvantaged groups risk being overlooked if they are not present in the decision‐making process. However, a mere presence in politics does not guarantee political success. Often groups need allies to promote their interests successfully. We argue that one way to identify such allies is to judge politicians by whether they have friends in historically disadvantaged groups, as intergroup friendships have been shown to make people understand and feel empathy for outgroups. In other words, intergroup friendships may function as an important complement to descriptive representation. We test our argument with a unique survey that asks all elected political representatives in Sweden's 290 municipalities (response rate 79 per cent) about their friendship ties to, and their representation of, five historically disadvantaged groups: women, immigrants, youths, pensioners and blue‐collar workers. We find a strong correlation between representatives’ friendship ties to these groups and their commitment to represent them. The correlation is especially strong for youths and blue‐collar workers, which likely can be explained by the fact that these groups usually lack crucial political resources (such as experience and education). We conclude that friendship ties function as an important complement to descriptive representation for achieving substantive representation.
    May 16, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12266   open full text
  • The Jack Wills crowd: towards a sociology of an elite subculture.
    Anthony King, Daniel Smith.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 16, 2017
    British sociologists have long been interested in youth sub‐cultures. However British sociologists have tended to focus on working class subcultures and avoided engagement with exclusive sub‐cultures of elite social groups. This article seeks to attend to this gap by examining the subculture of a British elite: ex‐public school students at select universities in the UK in the twenty‐first century. This group consists of a relatively small group of young adults, aged between 18 and 23, who attended public schools, especially one of the nine Clarendon schools (Eton, Winchester, Westminster, St. Paul's, Merchant Taylor's, Shrewsbury, Rugby, Harrow and Charterhouse), and were students at a selective group of British universities, primarily Oxford and Cambridge, Durham, Bristol, Exeter, Bath, Manchester, St Andrews and Edinburgh. The article examines the way in which this group has reconfigured and re‐constituted itself in the face of globalizing challenges. Specifically, it examines the way in which participation of ex‐public school students in events run by and under the patronage of the high street retailing company, Jack Wills, has played a galvanising role for this group in the last decade. The Jack Wills crowd is an example of how some young adults form exclusive social networks and reproduce prevailing forms of privilege. The social networks built around the Jack Wills subculture is likely to provide them with advantages in the job market through a prodigious network of connections and patrons. The Jack Wills subculture potentially contributions to the socio‐economic reproduction of the higher professional middle classes.
    May 16, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12254   open full text
  • German Muslims and their engagement in participatory culture: reflections on civic and artistic contributions to the public sphere.
    Asmaa Soliman.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 30, 2017
    This paper examines publics of young German Muslims. Case studies include the singer Huelya Kandemir, the theatre group Uma Lamo and the social network Zahnräder. By focusing on spiritual music publics, theatrical comedy publics and social publics, it tries a new approach to the way in which we understand minority public engagement. In addition to examining the concept of counterpublics, it utilizes the concept of participatory culture, which offers a relevant complement. The study argues that the publics of young German Muslims display multifaceted artistic and civic engagement, which can best be understood in terms of participation in cultural or civic productions and contribution to the wider German public. Features or effects of counterpublics, such as the countering of mainstream representations of minority identities and the offering of alternative discourses, are occasionally reflected in their activities.
    April 30, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12264   open full text
  • The state and the development of an information society: Greek policy and experience.
    Dimitris Boucas.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 30, 2017
    The paper looks into the dynamics of information society policy and its implementation in the Greek context. It argues that information society development is a contested process, influenced by pre‐existing state, economy and society relations. Based on this, it looks into the different aspects of the idiosyncratic path which the evolution of the Greek information society has followed, particularly after 2000. Using Bob Jessop's strategic‐relational approach (SRA) to the state as an analytical framework and drawing on a number of in‐depth interviews with relevant political actors, it provides insights into policy implementation by examining: the public management of information technology projects, how such projects were received in bureaucratic structures and practices, as well as the relationship between the state and the information and communication technology (ICT) sector in public procurement processes. The emphasis is on the period 2000–2008, during which a major operational programme on the information society in Greece was put into effect. The paper also touches upon the post‐2008 experience, suggesting that information society developments might include dynamics operating independently and even in contradiction to the state agenda.
    April 30, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12238   open full text
  • Is ethnic prejudice declining in Britain? Change in social distance attitudes among ethnic majority and minority Britons.
    Ingrid Storm, Maria Sobolewska, Robert Ford.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 29, 2017
    Most literature on racial prejudice deals with the racial attitudes of the ethnic majority and ethnic minorities separately. This paper breaks this tradition. We examine the social distance attitudes of white and non‐white British residents to test if these attitudes follow the same trends over time, whether they are driven by the same social processes and whether they are inter‐related. We have three main findings. Firstly, social distance from other ethnic groups has declined over time for both white and ethnic minority Britons. For the white majority there are both period and cohort elements to this decline. Secondly, we see some evidence that social distance between the majority and minority groups is reciprocal. Specifically, minorities who experience rejection by the white British feel a greater sense of distance from them. Thirdly, we find that all groups share the perception of the same ethnic hierarchy. We see evidence of particularly widespread hostility towards Muslim Britons from all ethnic groups suggesting that Muslims are singled out for negative attention from many British residents of all other backgrounds, including a large number who do not express hostility to other groups.
    April 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12250   open full text
  • How fields vary.
    Monika Krause.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 06, 2017
    Field theorists have long insisted that research needs to pay attention to the particular properties of each field studied. But while much field‐theoretical research is comparative, either explicitly or implicitly, scholars have only begun to develop the language for describing the dimensions along which fields can be similar to and different from each other. In this context, this paper articulates an agenda for the analysis of variable properties of fields. It discusses variation in the degree but also in the kind of field autonomy. It discusses different dimensions of variation in field structure: fields can be more or less contested, and more or less hierarchical. The structure of symbolic oppositions in a field may take different forms. Lastly, it analyses the dimensions of variation highlighted by research on fields on the sub‐ and transnational scale. Post‐national analysis allows us to ask how fields relate to fields of the same kind on different scales, and how fields relate to fields on the same scale in other national contexts. It allows us to ask about the role resources from other scales play in structuring symbolic oppositions within fields. A more fine‐tuned vocabulary for field variation can help us better describe particular fields and it is a precondition for generating hypotheses about the conditions under which we can expect to observe fields with specified characteristics.
    April 06, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12258   open full text
  • Value orientations and social attitudes in the holistic milieu.
    Franz Höllinger.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 01, 2017
    Based on a representative population survey for Germany this article investigates whether engagement in holistic activities is associated with privatized lifestyles and lack of social responsibility or with countercultural orientations and base‐democratic political commitment. To analyse this question, respondents who are engaged in holistic activities are divided into three groups that are compared with each other as well as with Christians and non‐religious people. The findings show that the three holistic groups are characterized by clearly different attitudinal patterns: Respondents engaged in body‐mind‐spirit activities have an affinity to self‐directed ways of life, post‐materialism and environmentalism. Holistic Christians try to combine the Christian ideal of altruism and post‐materialist orientations. Those who are attracted only to magical‐occult practices are primarily concerned with individualistic self‐improvement and correspond more to the image of the hedonist consumer at the esoteric marketplace.
    April 01, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12255   open full text
  • Sustaining corporate class consciousness across the new liquid managerial elite in Britain.
    Aeron Davis.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 01, 2017
    This article asks: how is class consciousness and cohesiveness amongst the UK business elite maintained in the twenty‐first century? Elite studies traditionally sought to account for the construction and circulation of dominant ideology through exclusive education systems, institutional board interlocks and club memberships. The problem is that business elite membership of all these institutions has been steady declining in recent decades. Contemporary corporate elites now appear more mobile and fragmented in an age of globalization. However, class cohesion amongst business leaders appears as strong as ever after decades of neoliberal policy hegemony. So, how are such ideas, norms and values circulated and maintained? This study tried to answer this question drawing on a set of 30 semi‐structured interviews with top UK CEOs and a demographic audit of current FTSE 100 CEOs. The findings suggest that three additional means of achieving business elite coherence have become more significant: professional business education, semi‐formal but regular meeting sites, and specialist business media.
    April 01, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12257   open full text
  • Cosmopolitanism through mobility: physical‐corporeal or virtual‐imagined?
    Knut Petzold.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 01, 2017
    In the context of increasing cross‐border mobility and the associated interconnections and diversities, ‘cosmopolitanism’ has become a key concept in sociology. Understood as individual real‐world orientation, many authors consider a central cause for cosmopolitanism in physical‐corporeal mobility, in particular transnationally. However, the significance of virtual and imagined mobility, such as via television or the Internet, is increasingly emphasized. Nevertheless, it has so far been little examined how and with which relative strength physical‐corporeal and virtual‐imagined mobility are associated with cosmopolitan orientations. Unlike previous studies, the two forms of mobility are considered simultaneously. On the basis of existing studies and theoretical considerations, it is assumed that the dimension of global orientation is influenced rather by physical‐corporeal than by virtual‐imagined mobility, whereas the dimension of cultural openness is influenced rather by virtual‐imagined than by physical mobility. One reason could be the different potential of the mobility forms to respond to perceived conflicts in the confrontation with the Other. The hypotheses are preliminary tested using data from an online survey that allows both to distinguish locals, (national) shuttles and transnationals, and to query media use. An exploratory principal component analysis confirmed, as in other studies, that global orientation and cultural openness are distinct dimensions. The results of the multivariate analyses largely support the hypotheses and indicate that in investigations of cosmopolitanism, the processes of identity‐related self‐categorization should be distinguished from pure socialization processes.
    April 01, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12253   open full text
  • Stagnation only on the surface? The implications of skill and family responsibilities for the gender wage gap in Sweden, 1974–2010.
    Katarina Boye, Karin Halldén, Charlotta Magnusson.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 31, 2017
    The wage differential between women and men persists in advanced economies despite the inflow of women into qualified occupations in recent years. Using five waves of the Swedish Level‐of‐Living Survey (LNU), this paper explores the gender wage gap in Sweden during the 1974–2010 period overall and by skill level. The empirical analyses showed that the general gender wage gap has been nearly unchanged for the past 30 years. However, the gender difference in wage in less qualified occupations fell considerably, whereas the gender pay gap remained stable for men and women in qualified occupations. The larger significance of family responsibilities for wages in qualified occupations is one likely explanation for this result.
    March 31, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12252   open full text
  • Making the middle classes on shifting ground? Residential status, performativity and middle‐class subjectivities in contemporary London.
    Michaela Benson, Emma Jackson.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 29, 2017
    This paper argues that shifts in access to housing – both in relation to rental and ownership – disrupt middle‐class reproduction in ways that fundamentally influence class formation. While property ownership has had a long association with middle‐class identities, status and distinction, an increasingly competitive rental market alongside inflated property prices has impacted on expectations and anxieties over housing futures. In this paper, we consider two key questions: (1) What happens to middle‐class identities under the conditions of this wider structural change? (2) How do the middle classes variously manoeuvre within this? Drawing on empirical research conducted in London, we demonstrate that becoming an owner‐occupier may be fractured along lines of class but also along the axes of age, wealth and timing, particularly as this relates to the housing market. It builds on understandings of residential status and place as central to the formation of class, orienting this around the recognition of both people and place as mutable, emphasizing that changing economic and social processes generate new class positionalities and strategies for class reproduction. We argue that these processes are writ large in practices of belonging and claims to place, with wider repercussions within the urban landscape.
    March 29, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12256   open full text
  • Corporate social responsibility and conflicts of interest in the alcohol and gambling industries: a post‐political discourse?
    Ben Baumberg Geiger, Valentina Cuzzocrea.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 28, 2017
    The corporate pursuit of social goals – known as Corporate Social Responsibility or ‘CSR’ – has been subject to critique on a number of grounds. However, a hitherto underexplored potential consequence of CSR has been suggested in a recent paper by C. Garsten and K. Jacobsson (‘Post‐Political Regulation: Soft Power and Post‐political Visions in Global Governance’ (2013), Critical Sociology 39: 421–37). They suggest that CSR is part of an international trend towards ‘post‐political’ governance discourses, where an emphasis on different actors’ common goals obscures conflicts of interest, subverting the open political conflict necessary for a well‐functioning democracy. This paper examines whether such post‐political discourses – including an outright denial of conflict of interest – can be found within the alcohol and gambling industries, where conflicts of interest are likely to be particularly acute given the addictive nature of the goods/services in question. Based on interviews with CSR professionals in these industries in Italy, the UK, and at EU‐level, we do indeed find evidence of a post‐political discourse. In these discourses, alcohol/gambling industry staff deny potential conflicts of interest on the basis that any small benefits from sales to a small number of addicts are seen to be outweighed by the reputational damage that addicts cause. Crucially, however, this coexists with another, less post‐political discourse, where addictions CSR professionals emphasize ‘common ground’ as a basis for CSR, while accepting some instances of possible conflict of interest. Here interviewees make considerable efforts to differentiate good (sustainable) from bad (short‐term) self‐interest in order to stress the genuineness of their own actions. We conclude the paper by considering whether CSR embedded within a ‘common ground’ discourse still hides conflicts of interests and subverts democratic debate, or overcomes the problems identified by Garsten and Jacobsson.
    March 28, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12249   open full text
  • Crowding‐in: how Indian civil society organizations began mobilizing around climate change.
    Tuomas Ylä‐Anttila, Pradip Swarnakar.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 22, 2017
    This paper argues that periodic waves of crowding‐in to ‘hot’ issue fields are a recurring feature of how globally networked civil society organizations operate, especially in countries of the Global South. We elaborate on this argument through a study of Indian civil society mobilization around climate change. Five key mechanisms contribute to crowding‐in processes: (1) the expansion of discursive opportunities; (2) the event effects of global climate change conferences; (3) the network effects created by expanding global civil society networks; (4) the adoption and innovation of action repertoires; and (5) global pressure effects creating new opportunities for civil society. Our findings contribute to the world society literature, with an account of the social mechanisms through which global institutions and political events affect national civil societies, and to the social movements literature by showing that developments in world society are essential contributors to national mobilization processes.
    March 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12251   open full text
  • Race in an epigenetic time: thinking biology in the plural.
    Maurizio Meloni.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 22, 2017
    The notion that biological memories of environmental experiences can be embedded in the human genome and even transmitted transgenerationally is increasingly relevant in the postgenomic world, particularly in molecular epigenetics, where the genome is conceptualized as porous to environmental signals. In this article I discuss the current rethinking of race in epigenetic rather than genetic terms, emphasizing some of its paradoxical implications, especially for public policy. I claim in particular that: (i) if sociologists want to investigate race in a postgenomic world they should pay more attention to this novel plastic and biosocial view of race; and (ii) there are no reasons to believe that an epigenetic view will extinguish race, or that soft‐inheritance claims will produce a less exclusionary discourse than genetics (hard heredity). Quite the opposite, the ground for a re‐racialization of social debates and the reinforcement of biological boundaries between groups are highlighted in the article.
    March 22, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12248   open full text
  • W. E. B. Du Bois at the center: from science, civil rights movement, to Black Lives Matter.
    Aldon Morris.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 23, 2017
    I am honoured to present the 2016 British Journal of Sociology Annual Lecture at the London School of Economics. My lecture is based on ideas derived from my new book, The Scholar Denied: W.E.B. Du Bois and the Birth of Modern Sociology. In this essay I make three arguments. First, W.E.B. Du Bois and his Atlanta School of Sociology pioneered scientific sociology in the United States. Second, Du Bois pioneered a public sociology that creatively combined sociology and activism. Finally, Du Bois pioneered a politically engaged social science relevant for contemporary political struggles including the contemporary Black Lives Matter movement.
    February 23, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12241   open full text
  • Social closure, micro‐class immobility and the intergenerational reproduction of the upper class: a comparative study.
    Lucia Ruggera, Carlo Barone.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 09, 2017
    This article assesses how processes of social closure enhance intergenerational immobility in the regulated professions and thus promote persistence at the top of the occupational hierarchy. We compare four European countries (GB, Germany, Denmark and Sweden) that differ considerably in their degree of professional regulation and in their broader institutional arrangements. We run log‐linear and logistic regression models on a cumulative dataset based on three large‐scale surveys with detailed and highly comparable information at the level of unit occupations. Our analyses indicate that children of licensed professionals are far more likely to inherit the occupation of their parents and that this stronger micro‐class immobility translates into higher chances of persistence in the upper class. These results support social closure theory and confirm the relevance of a micro‐class approach for the explanation of social fluidity and of its cross‐national variations. Moreover, we find that, when children of professionals do not reproduce the micro‐class of their parents, they still display disproportionate chances of persistence in professional employment. Hence, on the one hand, processes of social closure erect barriers between professions and fuel micro‐class immobility at the top. On the other hand, the cultural proximity of different professional groups drives intense intergenerational exchanges between them. Our analyses indicate that these micro‐ and meso‐class rigidities work as complementary routes to immobility at the top.
    February 09, 2017   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12235   open full text
  • Subjective well‐being in the new China: religion, social capital, and social status.
    Yunsong Chen, Mark Williams.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 01, 2016
    We present the first nationally representative evidence on the relationship between religion and subjective well‐being for the case of China. Research on Western societies tends to find a positive association between being religious and level of well‐being. China provides an interesting critical case as the religious population is growing rapidly and the religious and socioeconomic environments are profoundly different from Western societies, implying different mechanisms might be at work. We hypothesize to find a positive association between religion and well‐being in China too, but argue social capital, for which strong evidence is often found in Western societies, is unlikely to be an important mechanism because religion in China is generally non‐congregational. Instead, we argue that the private and subjective dimension of religion matters for well‐being in China by helping adherents have an improved sense of social status relative to the non‐religious in the context of rapid social change and growing inequality. Our results generally support these predictions.
    December 01, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12232   open full text
  • Cosmopolitanism and the relevance of ‘zombie concepts’: the case of anomic suicide amongst Alevi Kurd youth.
    Umit Cetin.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 25, 2016
    Against Beck's claims that conventional sociological concepts and categories are zombie categories, this paper argues that Durkheim's theoretical framework in which suicide is a symptom of an anomic state of society can help us understand the diversity of trajectories that transnational migrants follow and that shape their suicide rates within a cosmopolitan society. Drawing on ethnographic data collected on eight suicides and three attempted suicide cases of second‐generation male Alevi Kurdish migrants living in London, this article explains the impact of segmented assimilation/adaptation trajectories on the incidence of suicide and how their membership of a ‘new rainbow underclass’, as a manifestation of cosmopolitan society, is itself an anomic social position with a lack of integration and regulation.
    November 25, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12234   open full text
  • Barossa Night: cohesion in the British Army officer corps.
    Patrick Bury.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 25, 2016
    Contrasting the classical explanation of military group cohesion as sustained by interpersonal bonds, recent scholars have highlighted the importance of ritualized communication, training and drills in explaining effective military performance in professional armies. While this has offered a welcome addition to the cohesion literature and a novel micro‐sociological method of examining cohesion, its primary evidential base has been combat groups. Indeed, despite their prominent role in directing operations over the past decade, the British Army's officer corps has received relatively little attention from sociologists during this period. No attempt has been made to explain cohesion in the officer corps. Using a similar method to recent cohesion scholars, this paper seeks to address this imbalance by undertaking a micro‐sociology of one ritual in particular: ‘Barossa Night’ in the Royal Irish Regiment. Firstly, it draws on the work of Durkheim to examine how cohesion amongst the officer corps is created and sustained through a dense array of practises during formal social rituals. It provides evidence that the use of rituals highlights that social solidarity is central to understanding officer cohesion. Secondly, following Hockey's work on how private soldiers negotiate order, the paper shows how this solidarity in the officer corps is based on a degree of negotiated order and the need to release organizational tensions inherent in a strictly hierarchical rank structure. It highlights how the awarding of gallantry medals can threaten this negotiated order and fuel deviancy. In examining this behaviour, the paper shows that even amongst an officer class traditionally viewed as the elite upholders of organizational discipline, the negotiation of rank and hierarchy can be fluid. How deviant behaviour is later accepted and normalized by senior officers indicates that negotiated order is as important to understanding cohesion in the British Army's officer corps as it is amongst private soldiers.
    November 25, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12236   open full text
  • Eating together and eating alone: meal arrangements in British households.
    Luke Yates, Alan Warde.
    British Journal of Sociology. November 18, 2016
    Sociology traditionally accounts for eating in terms of the social organization of meals, their provision and consumption. A recurrent public concern is that the meal is being subverted. This paper examines meal arrangements in British households in 2012, drawing on an online survey in the format of a food diary administered to 2784 members of a supermarket consumer panel. It charts the organization of contemporary eating occasions, paying attention to socio‐demographic variation in practice. Especially, it explores companionless meals, putting them in contexts of food provisioning and temporal rhythms. Findings show that eating alone is associated with simpler, quicker meals, and that it takes place most commonly in the morning and midday. Those living alone eat alone more often, but at similar meal times, and they take longer over their lone meals. Comparison with a similar study in 1955–6 suggests some fragmentation or relaxation in collective schedules. The implications are not straightforward, and the causes probably lie more in institutional shifts than personal preferences. Declining levels of commensality are, however, associated with a reduction in household size and, especially in households with children, difficulties of coordinating family members’ schedules.
    November 18, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12231   open full text
  • Continuity, change and complexity in the performance of masculinity among elite young footballers in England.
    Steven Roberts, Eric Anderson, Rory Magrath.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 31, 2016
    Following recent research evidencing that young men are redefining the essential components of what it is to be a man, this paper draws on qualitative interviews with 22 elite‐level, English Premier League academy level football (soccer) players to investigate their performances and understandings of masculinity in relation to decreasing homohysteria. Even in this gender‐segregated, near‐total institution, these working‐class, non‐educationally aspiring adolescents evidence an attenuated performance of ‘maleness’ and improved attitudinal disposition toward homosexuality. Congruent with insights developed by inclusive masculinity scholars, respondents maintained emotional closeness and physical tactility with male teammates and friends. These more inclusive attitudes and homosocial behaviours were, however, slightly more conservative than in other recent research. We close by explaining this variation with reference to theoretical apparatus’ provided by Goffman and Bourdieu to advance theoretical debates about social class and masculinities.
    October 31, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12237   open full text
  • Do organizational and political–legal arrangements explain financial wrongdoing?
    Harland Prechel, Lu Zheng.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 18, 2016
    The 2008 financial crisis was a systemic problem with deep‐rooted structural causes that created opportunities to engage in financial malfeasance, a form of corporate wrongdoing. However, few quantitative studies exist on the effects of organizational and political–legal arrangements on financial malfeasance. In this paper, we examine the effects of organizational and political–legal arrangements that emerged in the 1990s in the FIRE sector (i.e., financial, insurance, and real estate) on financial malfeasance. Our historical contextualization demonstrates how changes in the political–legal arrangements facilitate the emergence of new corporate structures and opportunities for financial malfeasance. Our longitudinal quantitative analysis demonstrates that US FIRE sector corporations with a more complex organizational structure, larger size, lower dividend payment, and higher executive compensation are more prone to commit financial malfeasance.
    October 18, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12212   open full text
  • Intergenerational solidarity: the paradox of reciprocity imbalance in ageing welfare states.
    Peter Thijssen.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 28, 2016
    In this article a new theoretical framework is applied to a research field that is somewhat fragmented, namely that of intergenerational solidarity in ageing welfare states. Inspired by utilitarian considerations many scholars tend to problematize the lack of reciprocity characterizing intergenerational exchanges. As some generations are longer old and more numerous they may receive excessive state‐administered support of the younger generations, especially in a democratic setting. However, in reality there is limited empirical evidence of intergenerational conflict and theoretical explanations of this paradox are rare. An integrated and dynamical approach that incorporates Durkheim's solidarity theory, Honneth's intersubjective recognition theory, and the current work on reciprocal exchange is necessary in order to understand the survival of intergenerational solidarity in ageing welfare states. According to this model reciprocal recognition leading to the empathization of exchanges is the driving force of intergenerational solidarity in a prefigurative and democratized culture where the status of the young has risen dramatically. Hence, we come to the paradoxical conclusion that attempts to preserve intergenerational solidarity by openly denouncing excessive transfers and trying to bypass them institutionally sometimes might be counterproductive because they may erode their empathic underpinnings.
    September 28, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12221   open full text
  • The sociology of late secularization: social divisions and religiosity.
    Steve Bruce.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 22, 2016
    At the start of the twentieth century the religious differed from the religiously indifferent largely in being religious. Now they differ in a number of other social and demographic characteristics that reduce interaction between the two populations further than simple numbers would require. That some of the main carriers of religion are immigrants or adherents of recently imported faiths reinforces the sense that religion is what other people do. In the context of the stock of religious knowledge being depleted and religion‐taken‐too‐seriously being unpopular, the narrow demographic base of the religious makes conversion unlikely and thus makes the reversal of secularization unlikely.
    September 22, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12219   open full text
  • Student involvement in the UK sex industry: motivations and experiences.
    Tracey Sagar, Debbie Jones, Katrien Symons, Jacky Tyrie, Ron Roberts.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 19, 2016
    The Student Sex Work Project was set up in 2012 in the United Kingdom (UK) to locate students who are involved in the sex industry, to discover their motivations and needs, and in doing so provide an evidence base to consider the development of policy and practice within Higher Education. As part of this initiative, a large survey was undertaken comprising students from throughout the UK. Reporting on the findings from this survey, the article sheds some light on what occupations students take up in the sex industry, what motivates their participation and how they experience the work. The study also offers a much‐needed empirical input to the ongoing academic debates on the nature of sex work. The results suggest that there can be little doubt of a student presence within the sex industry in the UK. The motivations and experiences of student sex workers cover elements of agency and choice as well as of force and exploitation and it is suggested that student sex work is best understood from a polymorphous framework which leaves room for a wide variety of experiences and challenges.
    September 19, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12216   open full text
  • Constructions, reconstructions and deconstructions of ‘family’ amongst people who live apart together (LATs).
    Mariya Stoilova, Sasha Roseneil, Julia Carter, Simon Duncan, Miranda Phillips.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 19, 2016
    This article explores how people who live apart from their partners in Britain describe and understand ‘family’. It investigates whether, and how far, non‐cohabiting partners, friends, ‘blood’ and legal ties are seen as ‘family’, and how practices of care and support, and feelings of closeness are related to these constructions. It suggests that people in LAT relationships creatively draw and re‐draw the boundaries of family belonging in ways that involve emotionally subjective understandings of family life, and that also refer to normative constructions of what ‘family’ ought to be, as well as to practical recognitions of lived family ‘realities’. This often involves handling uncertainties about what constitutes ‘family’.
    September 19, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12220   open full text
  • The disorganized family: institutions, practices and normativity.
    Lisa Smyth.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 14, 2016
    This paper considers the value of a normative account of the relationship between agents and institutions for contemporary efforts to explain ever more complex and disorganized forms of social life. The character of social institutions, as they relate to practices, agents and norms, is explored through an engagement with the common claim that family life has been de‐institutionalized. The paper argues that a normative rather than empirical definition of institutions avoids a false distinction between institutions and practices. Drawing on ideas of social freedom and creative action from critical theory, the changes in family life are explained not as an effect of de‐institutionalization, but as a shift from an organized to a disorganized institutional type. This is understood as a response to changes in the wider normative structure, as a norm of individual freedom has undermined the legitimacy of the organized patriarchal nuclear family, with gender ascribed roles and associated duties. Contemporary motherhood is drawn on to illustrate the value of analysing the dynamic interactions between institutions, roles and practices for capturing both the complexity and the patterned quality of social experience.
    September 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12217   open full text
  • Targeted harassment, subcultural identity and the embrace of difference: a case study.
    Paul Hodkinson, Jon Garland.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 09, 2016
    This paper examines the significance of experiences and understandings of targeted harassment to the identities of youth subcultural participants, through case study research on goths. It does so against a context of considerable recent public discussion about the victimization of alternative subcultures and a surprising scarcity of academic research on the subject. The analysis presented indicates that, although individual direct experiences are diverse, the spectre of harassment can form an ever‐present accompaniment to subcultural life, even for those who have never been seriously targeted. As such, it forms part of what it is to be a subcultural participant and comprises significant common ground with other members. Drawing upon classic and more recent understandings of how subcultural groups respond to broader forms of outside hostility, we show how the shared experience of feeling targeted for harassment tied in with a broader subcultural discourse of being stigmatized by a perceived ‘normal’ society. The role of harassment as part of this, we argue, contributed to the strength with which subcultural identities were felt and to a positive embrace of otherness.
    September 09, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12214   open full text
  • Processes of social flourishing and their liminal collapse: elements to a genealogy of globalization.
    Arpad Szakolczai.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 17, 2016
    This article aims at exploring a long‐term historical perspective on which contemporary globalization can be more meaningfully situated. A central problem with established approaches to globalization is that they are even more presentist than the literature on modernization was. Presentism not only means the ignoring of history, but also the unreflective application to history of concepts taken from the study of the modern world. In contrast, it is argued that contemporary globalization is not a unique development, but rather is a concrete case of a historical type. Taking as its point of departure the spirit, rather than the word, of Max Weber, this article extends the scope of sociological investigation into archaeological evidence. Having a genealogical design and introducing the concept of ‘liminality’, the article approaches the modern process of globalization through reconstructing the internal dynamics of another type of historical change called ‘social flourishing’. Taking up the Weberian approach continued by Eisenstadt in his writings on ‘axial age’, it moves away from situations of crisis as reference point, shifting attention to periods of revival by introducing the term ‘epiphany’. Through the case of early Mesopotamia, it shows how social flourishing can be transmogrified into globalizing growth, gaining a new perspective concerning the kind of ‘animating spirit’ that might have driven the shift from Renaissance to Reformation, the rise of modern colonialism, or contemporary globalization. More generally, it will retrieve the long‐term historical background of the axial age and demonstrate the usefulness and importance of archaeological evidence for sociology.
    August 17, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12213   open full text
  • The remaining core: a fresh look at religiosity trends in Great Britain.
    Sarah Wilkins‐Laflamme.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 08, 2016
    In recent years, there has been a growing argument that the end product of secularization may not be a disappearance of all things religious, but rather a polarization between a larger secular group in society and smaller religiously fervent and active communities. Yet, there has been little empirical testing of this theory in contexts of advanced secularization. The aim of this paper is to fill this gap by studying individual belief and religiosity trends over the past four decades in Great Britain, searching specifically for evidence of the population splitting more and more between religious ‘nones’ removed from all forms of religion, and actively religious individuals characterized by strong beliefs and favourable to the public involvement of religion. Analysing descriptive statistics from the 1983–2012 BSAs as well as more detailed models from the 1991, 1998 and 2008 BSAs, we find growing differences in levels of beliefs and attitudes towards public religion between the increasing proportions of unaffiliated and, in recent years and among younger cohorts, more stable proportions of religiously committed individuals. The remaining religiously committed generally have stronger beliefs and more favourable views towards religious leaders influencing politics in 2008 compared with 1991, and the unaffiliated, less favourable views towards public religion.
    August 08, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12205   open full text
  • The cosmopolitan contradictions of planetary urbanization.
    Gareth Millington.
    British Journal of Sociology. August 04, 2016
    This paper explores the empirical, conceptual and theoretical gains that can be made using cosmopolitan social theory to think through the urban transformations that scholars have in recent years termed planetary urbanization. Recognizing the global spread of urbanization makes the need for a cosmopolitan urban sociology more pressing than ever. Here, it is suggested that critical urban sociology can be invigorated by focusing upon the disconnect that Henri Lefebvre posits between the planetarization of the urban – which he views as economically and technologically driven – and his dis‐alienated notion of a global urban society. The first aim of this paper is to highlight the benefits of using ‘cosmopolitan’ social theory to understand Lefebvre's urban problematic (and to establish why this is also a cosmopolitan problematic); the second is to identify the core cosmopolitan contradictions of planetary urbanization, tensions that are both actually existing and reproduced in scholarly accounts. The article begins by examining the challenges presented to urban sociology by planetary urbanization, before considering how cosmopolitan sociological theory helps provide an analytical ‘grip’ on the deep lying social realities of contemporary urbanization, especially in relation to questions about difference, culture and history. These insights are used to identify three cosmopolitan contradictions that exist within urbanized (and urbanizing) space; tensions that provide a basis for a thoroughgoing cosmopolitan investigation of planetary urbanization.
    August 04, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12200   open full text
  • The making of ‘Boomergeddon’: the construction of the Baby Boomer generation as a social problem in Britain.
    Jennie Bristow.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 29, 2016
    High‐profile claims about the problem of the ‘Baby Boomer’ generation, made in media and policy circles in recent years, have contributed to an awakened interest in the sociology of generations. While many claims focus on resource issues arising from the existence of a relatively large cohort (for example, pensions and healthcare), they contain an implicit moral critique of the generation associated with the postwar ‘boom’ of the Sixties. This article examines the development of the cultural script of the Baby Boomer problem in British newspapers over a 26‐year period, to examine how shifts in the discourse about the Boomer generation relate to wider social, economic, cultural and political trends.
    July 29, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12206   open full text
  • A state of limbo: the politics of waiting in neo‐liberal Latvia.
    Liene Ozoliņa‐Fitzgerald.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 29, 2016
    This article presents an ethnographic study of politics of waiting in a post‐Soviet context. While activation has been explored in sociological and anthropological literature as a neo‐liberal governmental technology and its application in post‐socialist context has also been compellingly documented, waiting as a political artefact has only recently been receiving increased scholarly attention. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork at a state‐run unemployment office in Riga, this article shows how, alongside activation, state welfare policies also produce passivity and waiting. Engaging with the small but developing field of sociological literature on the politics of waiting, I argue that, rather than interpreting it as a clash between ‘neo‐liberal’ and ‘Soviet’ regimes, we should understand the double‐move of activation and imposition of waiting as a key mechanism of neo‐liberal biopolitics. This article thus extends the existing theorizations of the temporal politics of neo‐liberalism.
    July 29, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12204   open full text
  • Moral panic, moral regulation, and the civilizing process.
    Sean Hier.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 22, 2016
    This article compares two analytical frameworks ostensibly formulated to widen the focus of moral panic studies. The comparative analysis suggests that attempts to conceptualize moral panics in terms of decivilizing processes have neither substantively supplemented the explanatory gains made by conceptualizing moral panic as a form of moral regulation nor provided a viable alternative framework that better explains the dynamics of contemporary moral panics. The article concludes that Elias's meta‐theory of the civilizing process potentially provides explanatory resources to investigate a possible historical‐structural shift towards the so‐called age of (a)moral panic; the analytical demands of such a project, however, require a sufficiently different line of inquiry than the one encouraged by both the regulatory and decivilizing perspectives on moral panic.
    July 22, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12201   open full text
  • Gay guys using gay language: friendship, shared values and the intent‐context‐effect matrix.
    Mark McCormack, Liam Wignall, Max Morris.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 14, 2016
    This article draws on in‐depth interviews with 35 openly gay male undergraduates from four universities in England to develop an understanding of the changing nature of language related to homosexuality. In addition to finding a diminution in the prevalence of homophobic language, we demonstrate that participants maintain complex and nuanced understandings of phrases that do not use homophobic pejoratives, such as ‘that's so gay’. The majority of participants rejected the notion that these phrases are inherently homophobic, instead arguing that the intent with which they are said and the context in which they are used are vital in understanding their meaning and effect. We conceptualize an intent‐context‐effect matrix to understand the interdependency of these variables. Highlighting the situated nature of this matrix, we also demonstrate the importance of the existence of shared norms between those saying and hearing the phrase when interpreting such language.
    July 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12203   open full text
  • Why still marry? The role of feelings in the persistence of marriage as an institution1.
    Francesco C. Billari, Aart C. Liefbroer.
    British Journal of Sociology. July 14, 2016
    Despite cohabitation becoming increasingly equivalent to marriage in some of the most ‘advanced’ Western European societies, the vast majority of people still marry. Why so? Existing theories, mostly based on various approaches tied to cognitive decision‐making, do not provide a sufficient explanation of the persistence of marriage. In this article, we argue that feelings attached to marriage, i.e. the affective evaluation of those involved in a partner relationship concerning marriage as opposed to cohabitation, explain the persistent importance of marriage as an institution. We argue that socialization, biological and social‐structural factors affect these affective evaluations. We provide a test of our hypotheses using a longitudinal study of young adults in the Netherlands. The results of our analyses are consistent with a central role of feelings in the decision to marry, as well as with a role for key moderating factors such as gender.
    July 14, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12202   open full text
  • Fetishes and factishes: Durkheim and Latour.
    Bjørn Schiermer.
    British Journal of Sociology. June 03, 2016
    This paper defends the concept of ‘fetishism’ as an explanatory parameter in sociological theorizing on Durkheimian grounds, while at the same time paying due attention to important insights regarding the role of objects in social life, originating from Actor‐Network Theory (ANT). It critically assesses the current critique of the concept of fetishism propagated by ANT protagonist Bruno Latour. Latour and suggests a compromise between these two ‘schools’. First, to place the paper firmly in context, I analyse some examples of modern fetishism and outline the themes of the ensuing discussion. Next, I turn to Durkheim, seeking to develop a distinct interpretation of the concept of the social and of fetishism, and then point to some of Durkheim's shortcomings and attempt to make room for Latourian perspectives. Finally, I critically assess Latour's dismissal of forms of social ‘explanation’ and of the concept of fetishism.
    June 03, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12199   open full text
  • Kindness in Australia: an empirical critique of moral decline sociology.
    Daphne Habibis, Nicholas Hookway, Anthea Vreugdenhil.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 27, 2016
    A new sociological agenda is emerging that interrogates how morality can be established in the absence of the moral certainties of the past but there is a shortage of empirical work on this topic. This article establishes a theoretical framework for the empirical analysis of everyday morality drawing on the work of theorists including Ahmed, Bauman and Taylor. It uses the Australian Survey of Social Attitudes to assess the state and shape of contemporary moralities by asking how kind are Australians, how is its expression socially distributed, and what are the motivations for kindness. The findings demonstrate that Australians exhibit a strong attachment and commitment to kindness as a moral value that is primarily motivated by interiorized sources of moral authority. We argue these findings support the work of theorists such as Ahmed and Taylor who argue authenticity and embodied emotion are legitimate sources of morality in today's secular societies. The research also provides new evidence that generational changes are shaping understandings and practices of kindness in unexpected ways.
    May 27, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12194   open full text
  • Does media coverage influence public attitudes towards welfare recipients? The impact of the 2011 English riots.
    Aaron Reeves, Robert de Vries.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 27, 2016
    Following the shooting of Mark Duggan by police on 4 August 2011, there were riots in many large cities in the UK. As the rioting was widely perceived to be perpetrated by the urban poor, links were quickly made with Britain's welfare policies. In this paper, we examine whether the riots, and the subsequent media coverage, influenced attitudes toward welfare recipients. Using the British Social Attitudes survey, we use multivariate difference‐in‐differences regression models to compare attitudes toward welfare recipients among those interviewed before (pre‐intervention: i.e. prior to 6 August) and after (post‐intervention: 10 August–10 September) the riots occurred (N = 3,311). We use variation in exposure to the media coverage to test theories of media persuasion in the context of attitudes toward welfare recipients. Before the riots, there were no significant differences between newspaper readers and non‐readers in their attitudes towards welfare recipients. However, after the riots, attitudes diverged. Newspaper readers became more likely than non‐readers to believe that those on welfare did not really deserve help, that the unemployed could find a job if they wanted to and that those on the dole were being dishonest in claiming benefits. Although the divergence was clearest between right‐leaning newspaper and non‐newspaper readers, we do not a find statistically significant difference between right‐ and left‐leaning newspapers. These results suggest that media coverage of the riots influenced attitudes towards welfare recipients; specifically, newspaper coverage of the riots increased the likelihood that readers of the print media expressed negative attitudes towards welfare recipients when compared with the rest of the population.
    May 27, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12191   open full text
  • Public political thought: bridging the sociological–philosophical divide in the study of legitimacy.
    Uriel Abulof.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 27, 2016
    The study of political legitimacy is divided between prescriptive and descriptive approaches. Political philosophy regards legitimacy as principled justification, sociology regards legitimacy as public support. However, all people can, and occasionally do engage in morally reasoning their political life. This paper thus submits that in studying socio‐political legitimation – the legitimacy‐making process – the philosophical ought and the sociological is can be bridged. I call this construct ‘public political thought’ (PPT), signifying the public's principled moral reasoning of politics, which need not be democratic or liberal. The paper lays PPT's foundations and identifies its ‘builders’ and ‘building blocks’. I propose that the edifice of PPT is built by moral agents constructing and construing socio‐moral order (nomization). PPT's building blocks are justificatory common beliefs (doxa) and the deliberative language of legitimation. I illustrate the merits of this groundwork through two empirical puzzles: the end of apartheid and the emergence of Québécois identity.
    May 27, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12192   open full text
  • Homology and isomorphism: Bourdieu in conversation with New Institutionalism.
    Yingyao Wang.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 24, 2016
    Bourdieusian Field Theory (BFT) provided decisive inspiration for the early conceptual formulation of New Institutionalism (NI). This paper attempts to reinvigorate the stalled intellectual dialogue between NI and BFT by comparing NI's concept of isomorphism with BFT's notion of homology. I argue that Bourdieu's understanding of domination‐oriented social action, transposable habitus, and a non‐linear causality, embodied in his neglected concept of homology, provides an alternative theorization of field‐level convergence to New Institutionalism's central idea of institutional isomorphism. To showcase how BFT can be useful for organizational research, I postulate a habitus‐informed and field‐conditioned theory of transference to enrich NI's spin‐off thesis of ‘diffusion’. I propose that while NI can benefit from BFT's potential of bringing social structure back into organizational research, BFT can enrich its social analysis by borrowing from NI's elaboration of the symbolic system of organizations.
    May 24, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12197   open full text
  • Malala and the politics of global iconicity.
    Thomas Olesen.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 21, 2016
    The article presents a case analysis of Malala Yousafzai's transformation into a global injustice icon after she was shot in 2012 by the Pakistani Taliban for advocating for girls’ right to education. The analysis focuses on the political aspects of this process and is divided into three parts. The first looks at factors that facilitated Malala's iconization as she was undergoing medical treatment and was unable to participate in her iconization. The second part starts when Malala enters the global public sphere and begins to actively contribute to the iconization process. The third part identifies de‐iconizing resistance to Malala from Pakistani actors who see her iconization as a symbolic colonization in which Malala has become a vehicle of the West. Theoretically, the article is located within cultural sociology, but expands it in a political and global direction.
    May 21, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12195   open full text
  • Performative family: homosexuality, marriage and intergenerational dynamics in China.
    Susanne YP Choi, Ming Luo.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 21, 2016
    Using in‐depth interview data on nominal marriages – legal marriages between a gay man and a lesbian to give the appearance of heterosexuality – this paper develops the concept of performative family to explain the processes through which parents and their adult children negotiate and resolve disagreements in relation to marriage decisions in post‐socialist China. We identify three mechanisms – network pressure, a revised discourse of filial piety and resource leverage – through which parents influence their gay offspring's decision to turn to nominal marriage. We also delineate six strategies, namely minimizing network participation, changing expectations, making partial concessions, drawing the line, delaying decisions and ending the marriage, by which gay people in nominal marriages attempt to meet parental expectations while simultaneously retaining a degree of autonomy. Through these interactions, we argue that Chinese parents and their gay adult children implicitly and explicitly collaborate to perform family, emphasizing the importance of formally meeting society's expectations about marriage rather than substantively yielding to its demands. We also argue that the performative family is a pragmatic response to the tension between the persistent centrality of family and marriage and the rising tide of individualism in post‐socialist China. We believe that our findings highlight the specific predicament of homosexual people. They also shed light on the more general dynamics of intergenerational negotiation because there is evidence that the mechanisms used by parents to exert influence may well be similar between gay and non‐gay people.
    May 21, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12196   open full text
  • The persistence of cliques in the post‐communist state. The case of deniability in drug reimbursement policy in Poland.
    Piotr Ozierański, Lawrence King.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 21, 2016
    This article explores a key question in political sociology: Can post‐communist policy‐making be described with classical theories of the Western state or do we need a theory of the specificity of the post‐communist state? In so doing, we consider Janine Wedel's clique theory, concerned with informal social actors and processes in post‐communist transition. We conducted a case study of drug reimbursement policy in Poland, using 109 stakeholder interviews, official documents and media coverage. Drawing on ‘sensitizing concepts’ from Wedel's theory, especially the notion of ‘deniability’, we developed an explanation of why Poland's reimbursement policy combined suboptimal outcomes, procedural irregularities with limited accountability of key stakeholders. We argue that deniability was created through four main mechanisms: (1) blurred boundaries between different types of state authority allowing for the dispersion of blame for controversial policy decisions; (2) bridging different sectors by ‘institutional nomads’, who often escaped existing conflicts of interest regulations; (3) institutional nomads’ ‘flexible’ methods of influence premised on managing roles and representations; and (4) coordination of resources and influence by elite cliques monopolizing exclusive policy expertise. Overall, the greatest power over drug reimbursement was often associated with lowest accountability. We suggest, therefore, that the clique theory can be generalized from its home domain of explanation in foreign aid and privatizations to more technologically advanced policies in Poland and other post‐communist countries. This conclusion is not identical, however, with arguing the uniqueness of the post‐communist state. Rather, we show potential for using Wedel's account to analyse policy‐making in Western democracies and indicate scope for its possible integration with the classical theories of the state.
    May 21, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12193   open full text
  • Trauma management: Chernobyl in Belarus and Ukraine.
    Ekatherina Zhukova.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 18, 2016
    Although the Chernobyl nuclear disaster happened in the Soviet Union in 1986, we still do not know how the most affected states – Ukraine and Belarus – have managed this tragedy since independence. Drawing on the concept of cultural trauma, this article compares Chernobyl narratives in Belarus and Ukraine over the past 28 years. It shows that national narratives of Chernobyl differ, representing the varying ways in which the state overcomes trauma. Our understanding of post‐communist transformations can be improved by analysing trauma management narratives and their importance for new national identity construction. These narratives also bring new insights to our vision of cultural trauma by linking it to ontological insecurity. The article demonstrates how the state can become an arena of trauma process as it commands material and symbolic resources to deal with trauma. In general, it contributes to a better understanding of how the same traumatic event can become a source of solidarity in one community, but a source of hostility in another.
    May 18, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12198   open full text
  • Funerals and families: locating death as a relational issue.
    Kate Woodthorpe, Hannah Rumble.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 05, 2016
    Situated at the intersection of the Sociology of Death and Sociology of the Family, this paper argues that the organization and funding of funerals is an overlooked and available lens through which to examine cultural and political norms of familial obligation. Drawing on interviews with claimants to the Department for Work and Pensions’ Social Fund Funeral Payment, the paper shows how both responsibility for the organization and payment of a funeral is assumed within families, and how at times this can be overridden by the state. In highlighting the tension between reflexive choice and political norms of family espoused in this policy context, it supports Gilding's () assertion that understanding family practice through reflexivity alone neglects the institutions and conventions within which ‘doing’ family takes place. In so doing, the paper further makes a case for families and relational negotiations and tensions to be more explicitly included within sociological understanding(s) of death more generally.
    May 05, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12190   open full text
  • Party on wheels: mobile party spaces in the Norwegian high school graduation celebration.
    Eivind Grip Fjær, Willy Pedersen, Sveinung Sandberg.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 28, 2016
    Research on partying and nightlife often emphasizes commercial control while overlooking participants’ creativity and agency. Due to their age, appearance and transgressive partying, participants in the Norwegian high school graduation celebration have limited access to bars and pubs in the ordinary night‐time economy. To create alternative party spaces under their own control they utilize the spatial opportunities offered by automobility. Groups of students get together many years in advance and buy old buses which they refurbish to become rolling nightclubs that enable them to ‘transcend space’ through partying while on the move. These mobile party spaces provide a material and symbolic centre of communion and a tight space for physical assembly that enhances the production of intense positive emotions. In a cat‐and‐mouse game with the police, the buses provide a sense of nomadic autonomy, and enable participants to drink heavily for days on end. The study examines how youth may creatively zone their own party spaces within the context of automobility and how these mobile spaces again shape the partying that goes on within them. While this party practice opens up for autonomy, creativity and social transgressions reminiscent of liminal phases or carnivals, at a deeper level participants clearly reproduce class‐based differences and exaggerate conventional practices and symbols.
    April 28, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12189   open full text
  • Revitalizing sociology: urban life and mental illness between history and the present.
    Des Fitzgerald, Nikolas Rose, Ilina Singh.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 22, 2016
    This paper proposes a re‐thinking of the relationship between sociology and the biological sciences. Tracing lines of connection between the history of sociology and the contemporary landscape of biology, the paper argues for a reconfiguration of this relationship beyond popular rhetorics of ‘biologization' or ‘medicalization'. At the heart of the paper is a claim that, today, there are some potent new frames for re‐imagining the traffic between sociological and biological research – even for ‘revitalizing’ the sociological enterprise as such. The paper threads this argument through one empirical case: the relationship between urban life and mental illness. In its first section, it shows how this relationship enlivened both early psychiatric epidemiology, and some forms of the new discipline of sociology; it then traces the historical division of these sciences, as the sociological investment in psychiatric questions waned, and ‘the social' become marginalized within an increasingly ‘biological' psychiatry. In its third section, however, the paper shows how this relationship has lately been revivified, but now by a nuanced epigenetic and neurobiological attention to the links between mental health and urban life. What role can sociology play here? In its final section, the paper shows how this older sociology, with its lively interest in the psychiatric and neurobiological vicissitudes of urban social life, can be our guide in helping to identify intersections between sociological and biological attention. With a new century now underway, the paper concludes by suggesting that the relationship between urban life and mental illness may prove a core testing‐ground for a ‘revitalized' sociology.
    February 22, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12188   open full text
  • Real social analytics: A contribution towards a phenomenology of a digital world.
    Nick Couldry, Aristea Fotopoulou, Luke Dickens.
    British Journal of Sociology. February 18, 2016
    This article argues against the assumption that agency and reflexivity disappear in an age of ‘algorithmic power’ (Lash 2007). Following the suggestions of Beer (2009), it proposes that, far from disappearing, new forms of agency and reflexivity around the embedding in everyday practice of not only algorithms but also analytics more broadly are emerging, as social actors continue to pursue their social ends but mediated through digital interfaces: this is the consequence of many social actors now needing their digital presence, regardless of whether they want this, to be measured and counted. The article proposes ‘social analytics’ as a new topic for sociology: the sociological study of social actors’ uses of analytics not for the sake of measurement itself (or to make profit from measurement) but in order to fulfil better their social ends through an enhancement of their digital presence. The article places social analytics in the context of earlier debates about categorization, algorithmic power, and self‐presentation online, and describes in detail a case study with a UK community organization which generated the social analytics approach. The article concludes with reflections on the implications of this approach for further sociological fieldwork in a digital world.
    February 18, 2016   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12183   open full text
  • Work–life balance/imbalance: the dominance of the middle class and the neglect of the working class.
    Tracey Warren.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 21, 2015
    The paper was stimulated by the relative absence of the working class from work–life debates. The common conclusion from work–life studies is that work–life imbalance is largely a middle‐class problem. It is argued here that this classed assertion is a direct outcome of a particular and narrow interpretation of work–life imbalance in which time is seen to be the major cause of difficulty. Labour market time, and too much of it, dominates the conceptualization of work–life and its measurement too. This heavy focus on too much labour market time has rendered largely invisible from dominant work–life discourses the types of imbalance that are more likely to impact the working class. The paper's analysis of large UK data‐sets demonstrates a reduction in hours worked by working‐class men, more part‐time employment in working‐class occupations, and a substantial growth in levels of reported financial insecurity amongst the working classes after the 2008–9 recession. It shows too that economic‐based work–life imbalance is associated with lower levels of life satisfaction than is temporal imbalance. The paper concludes that the dominant conceptualization of work–life disregards the major work–life challenge experienced by the working class: economic precarity. The work–life balance debate needs to more fully incorporate economic‐based work–life imbalance if it is to better represent class inequalities.
    October 21, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12160   open full text
  • Notes towards a ‘social aesthetic’: Guest editors' introduction to the special section.
    Cristiana Olcese, Mike Savage.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 12, 2015
    There is an emerging ‘aesthetic turn’ within sociology which currently lacks clear focus. This paper reviews the different issues feeding into this interest and contributes to its development. Previous renderings of this relationship have set the aesthetic up against sociology, as an emphasis which ‘troubles’ conventional understandings of sociality and offers no ready way of reconciling the aesthetic with the social. Reflecting on the contributions of recent social theorists, from figures including Bourdieu, Born, Rancière, Deleuze, and Martin, we argue instead for the value of a social aesthetic which critiques instrumentalist and reductive understandings of the social itself. In explicating what form this might take, the latter parts of the paper take issue with classical modernist conceptions of the aesthetic which continue to dominate popular and sociological understandings of the aesthetic, and uses the motif of ‘walking’ to show how the aesthetic can be rendered in terms of ‘the mundane search’ and how this search spans everyday experience and cultural re‐production. We offer a provisional definition of social aesthetics as the embedded and embodied process of meaning making which, by acknowledging the physical/corporeal boundaries and qualities of the inhabited world, also allows imagination to travel across other spaces and times. It is hoped that this approach can be a useful platform for further inquiry.
    October 12, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12159   open full text
  • Pierre Bourdieu and Jacques Rancière on art/aesthetics and politics: the origins of disagreement, 1963–1985.
    Derek Robbins.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 12, 2015
    Rancière published two substantial criticisms of the work of Bourdieu in the early 1980s. It is possible that these were provoked by his sense that he needed to oppose what he considered to be the sociological reduction of aesthetic taste offered by Bourdieu in Distinction (Bourdieu 1986 [1979]) at precisely the moment when he (Rancière) was beginning to articulate his commitment to the potential of aesthetic expression as a mode of political resistance. Except in so far as it draws upon some of the retrospective reflections offered by Rancière in his introductions to the re‐issues of his early texts, this paper examines the parallel development of the thinking of the two men up to the mid‐1980s – but not beyond. The discussion is situated socio‐historically and, by definition, does not seek to offer comparatively any transhistorical assessment of the values of the positions adopted by the two men. I argue that Rancière misrepresented the character of Bourdieu's sociological work by failing to recognize the underlying phenomenological orientation of his thinking. Bourdieu suppressed this orientation in the 1960s but, after the May events of 1968, it enabled him to expose the extent to which the practices of both science and art operate within constructed ‘fields’ in strategic distinction from popular primary experience. The challenge is to introduce an ongoing dialogue between primary and constructed cultures rather than to suppose that either social science or art possesses intrinsic autonomy.
    October 12, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12148   open full text
  • On reflexivity and the conduct of the self in everyday life: reflections on Bourdieu and Archer.
    Sadiya Akram, Anthony Hogan.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 04, 2015
    This article provides a critique of the concept of reflexivity in social theory today and argues against the tendency to define agency exclusively in terms of reflexivity. Margaret Archer, in particular, is highlighted as a key proponent of this thesis. Archer argues that late modernity is characterized by reflexivity but, in our view, this position neglects the impact of more enduring aspects of agency, such as the routinization of social life and the role of the taken‐for‐granted. These concepts were pivotal to Bourdieu and Giddens' theorization of everyday life and action and to Foucault's understanding of technologies of the self. We offer Bourdieu's habitus as a more nuanced approach to theorizing agency, and provide an alternative account of reflexivity. Whilst accepting that reflexivity is a core aspect of agency, we argue that it operates to a backdrop of the routinization of social life and operates from within and not outside of habitus. We highlight the role of the breach in reflexivity, suggesting that it opens up a critical window for agents to initiate change. The article suggests caution in over‐ascribing reflexivity to agency, instead arguing that achieving reflexivity and change is a difficult and fraught process, which has emotional and moral consequences. The effect of this is that people often prefer the status quo, rather than to risk change and uncertainty.
    October 04, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12150   open full text
  • Ultimate concerns in late modernity: Archer, Bourdieu and reflexivity.
    David Farrugia, Dan Woodman.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 04, 2015
    Through a critique of Margaret Archer's theory of reflexivity, this paper explores the theoretical contribution of a Bourdieusian sociology of the subject for understanding social change. Archer's theory of reflexivity holds that conscious ‘internal conversations’ are the motor of society, central both to human subjectivity and to the ‘reflexive imperative’ of late modernity. This is established through critiques of Bourdieu, who is held to erase creativity and meaningful personal investments from subjectivity, and late modernity is depicted as a time when a ‘situational logic of opportunity’ renders embodied dispositions and the reproduction of symbolic advantages obsolete. Maintaining Archer's focus on ‘ultimate concerns’ in a context of social change, this paper argues that her theory of reflexivity is established through a narrow misreading and rejection of Bourdieu's work, which ultimately creates problems for her own approach. Archer's rejection of any pre‐reflexive dimensions to subjectivity and social action leaves her unable to sociologically explain the genesis of ‘ultimate concerns’, and creates an empirically dubious narrative of the consequences of social change. Through a focus on Archer's concept of ‘fractured reflexivity’, the paper explores the theoretical necessity of habitus and illusio for understanding the social changes that Archer is grappling with. In late modernity, reflexivity is valorized just as the conditions for its successful operation are increasingly foreclosed, creating ‘fractured reflexivity’ emblematic of the complex contemporary interaction between habitus, illusio, and accelerating social change.
    October 04, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12147   open full text
  • Fell runners and walking walls: towards a sociology of living landscapes and aesthetic atmospheres as an alternative to a Lakeland picturesque.
    Sarah Nettleton.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 23, 2015
    This article draws on analysis of data generated by way of an ethnography of fell running in the English Lake District and suggests that participants who have lived and run in the area for many years experience a particular mode of aesthetic. The Lake District has long been valued for its outstanding scenery represented in the aesthetic of the picturesque comprising relatively static landscapes that should be conserved. Established fell runners who have run in the area for many decades apprehend and appreciate the landscape in more complex, rooted and situated ways. The anthropologist Ingold, distinguishes between landscape and landsceppan, and this insight is instructive for grasping the way in which the runners do not simply scope scenery but work with the land: they shape it and are shaped by it. Fell runners are elements within the living environment and along with walls, sheep, becks, sun, rain – what Ingold evocatively calls the ‘weather‐world’ – are mobile. Movement is central to their aesthetic, they enjoy not so much the scenic but rather a fellsceppan and do so through their fast eye‐gait‐footwork and their lively, variable occupation with the terrain. The fells infiltrate and interpenetrate the runners and movement through the fells generates a somatic aesthetic. The pleasure in turn breeds existential capital an embodied gratification that serves as an attractor that binds those who appreciate feelings of being alive with and in the fells.
    September 23, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12146   open full text
  • Rethinking industrial citizenship: the role and meaning of work in an age of austerity.
    Tim Strangleman.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 15, 2015
    T. H. Marshall in his famous tract Citizenship and Social Class wrote briefly about what he called ‘industrial citizenship’, a type of belonging rooted in the workplace. Here Marshall's ideas are developed alongside a consideration of Durkheim's Professional Ethics and Civic Morals together with research material from the Guinness Company. It shows the way the Company actively sought to create ‘Guinness citizenship’ within its London brewery. The article draws out the ways in which the significance and potential of work based citizenship for ameliorating the ills of industrial society are clearly articulated in mid‐twentieth century Britain and echo earlier neglected Durkheimian sociological ideas on work. These ideas have real potential to inform contemporary academic and policy debates about the nature of capitalism and the form and content of work now and in the future.
    September 15, 2015   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12135   open full text
  • The idea of philosophical sociology.
    Daniel Chernilo.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 05, 2014
    This article introduces the idea of philosophical sociology as an enquiry into the relationships between implicit notions of human nature and explicit conceptualizations of social life within sociology. Philosophical sociology is also an invitation to reflect on the role of the normative in social life by looking at it sociologically and philosophically at the same: normative self‐reflection is a fundamental aspect of sociology's scientific tasks because key sociological questions are, in the last instance, also philosophical ones. For the normative to emerge, we need to move away from the reductionism of hedonistic, essentialist or cynical conceptions of human nature and be able to grasp the conceptions of the good life, justice, democracy or freedom whose normative contents depend on more or less articulated conceptions of our shared humanity. The idea of philosophical sociology is then sustained on three main pillars and I use them to structure this article: (1) a revalorization of the relationships between sociology and philosophy; (2) a universalistic principle of humanity that works as a major regulative idea of sociological research, and; (3) an argument on the social (immanent) and pre‐social (transcendental) sources of the normative in social life. As invitations to embrace posthuman cyborgs, non‐human actants and material cultures proliferate, philosophical sociology offers the reminder that we still have to understand more fully who are the human beings that populate the social world.
    May 05, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12077   open full text
  • Social media in the 2011 Egyptian uprising.
    Robert Brym, Melissa Godbout, Andreas Hoffbauer, Gabe Menard, Tony Huiquan Zhang.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 05, 2014
    This paper uses Gallup poll data to assess two narratives that have crystallized around the 2011 Egyptian uprising: (1) New electronic communications media constituted an important and independent cause of the protests in so far as they enhanced the capacity of demonstrators to extend protest networks, express outrage, organize events, and warn comrades of real‐time threats. (2) Net of other factors, new electronic communications media played a relatively minor role in the uprising because they are low‐cost, low‐risk means of involvement that attract many sympathetic onlookers who are not prepared to engage in high‐risk activism. Examining the independent effects of a host of factors associated with high‐risk movement activism, the paper concludes that using some new electronic communications media was associated with being a demonstrator. However, grievances, structural availability, and network connections were more important than was the use of new electronic communications media in distinguishing demonstrators from sympathetic onlookers. Thus, although both narratives have some validity, they must both be qualified.
    May 05, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12080   open full text
  • Alleviating poverty or reinforcing inequality? Interpreting micro‐finance in practice, with illustrations from rural China.
    Becky Yang Hsu.
    British Journal of Sociology. May 02, 2014
    Academic and political discussions about micro‐finance have been found lacking in predictive power, because they are based on orthodox economic theory, which does not properly comprehend the social components of credit. I take a better approach, utilizing credit theory – specifically, Ingham's explication of how the nature of money as credit leads to social inequality. I also expound the perspective that morality is not separate from considerations borrowers make in micro‐finance programmes on the micro level. I draw upon illustrations from my fieldwork in rural China, where a group‐lending micro‐finance programme was administered as part of a larger government‐initiated effort across the country.
    May 02, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12076   open full text
  • Social theory and current affairs: a framework for intellectual engagement.
    Rob Stones.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 27, 2014
    The paper aims to facilitate more adequate critical engagement with current affairs events by journalists, and with current affairs texts by audiences. It draws on social theory to provide the intellectual resources to enable this. The academic ambition is for the framework to be adopted and developed by social thinkers in producing exemplary critical readings of news and current affairs texts. To this end it is offered as a research paradigm. The paper situates its argument in relation to the wider literature in media and cultural studies, acknowledging the subtle skills required to appreciate the relative autonomy of texts. However, it draws attention to the lack of an adequate perspective with which to assess the frames, representations, and judgments within news and current affairs texts. To address this lacuna it proposes the conception of a social‐theoretical frame, based on a number of meta‐theoretical approaches, designed to provide audiences with a systematic means of addressing the status and adequacy of individual texts. Social theoretical frames can reveal the shortcomings of media framing of the contextual fields within which news and current affairs events take place. Two illustrative case studies are used to indicate the value and potential of the approach: the analysis of a short newspaper report of the return of protesters to Cairo's Tahrir Square in 2011, and a critique of four current affairs reports from various genres on the political turmoil in Thailand leading up to the clashes of May 2010.
    April 27, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12074   open full text
  • The arbitrariness and normativity of social conventions.
    Ismael Al‐Amoudi, John Latsis.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 09, 2014
    This paper investigates a puzzling feature of social conventions: the fact that they are both arbitrary and normative. We examine how this tension is addressed in sociological accounts of conventional phenomena. Traditional approaches tend to generate either synchronic accounts that fail to consider the arbitrariness of conventions, or diachronic accounts that miss central aspects of their normativity. As a remedy, we propose a processual conception that considers conventions as both the outcome and material cause of much human activity. This conceptualization, which borrows from the économie des conventions as well as critical realism, provides a novel perspective on how conventions are nested and defined, and on how they are established, maintained and challenged.
    April 09, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12042   open full text
  • Uncertainty: the Curate's egg in financial economics.
    Jocelyn Pixley.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 08, 2014
    Economic theories of uncertainty are unpopular with financial experts. As sociologists, we rightly refuse predictions, but the uncertainties of money are constantly sifted and turned into semi‐denial by a financial economics set on somehow beating the future. Picking out ‘bits’ of the future as ‘risk’ and ‘parts’ as ‘information’ is attractive but socially dangerous, I argue, because money's promises are always uncertain. New studies of uncertainty are reversing sociology's neglect of the unavoidable inability to know the forces that will shape the financial future.
    April 08, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12070   open full text
  • The advanced use of mobile phones in five European countries.
    Leopoldina Fortunati, Sakari Taipale.
    British Journal of Sociology. April 04, 2014
    The paper explores the advanced users of mobile phones in Italy, France, Germany, Spain and the UK (EU5 countries) and aims to clarify the social meaning of advanced use. The mobile phone is seen as a strategic tool of social labour, whose capabilities are exploited to a different extent in the five studied countries. The analysis is based on a cross‐national survey data collected in 2009 (N = 7,255). First, the results show that there are substantial differences in the advanced use of mobile phone and its predictors in Europe. Generally, only about one third of the studied mobile features are exploited. British and French people are the most advanced users, followed by German, Spanish and Italians. While Italians have stuck to early developed mobile phone features, Britons especially have continued to adopt the newer properties of the mobile phone. Second, the article shows that owing to the extensive under‐utilization of its features, the mobile phone as a tool of social labour is efficiently exploited by only a small number of people. They, however, constitute technological vanguards that make use of the diverse features in different countries. This limited use of advanced features results in the new patterns of social stratification.
    April 04, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12075   open full text
  • Pennies from heaven? Conceptions and earmarking of lottery prize money,.
    Anna Hedenus.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 24, 2014
    The source of money has been shown to be important for how money is spent. In addition, sudden wealth is often associated with social and psychological risks. This article investigates if conceptions of lottery prize money – as a special kind of money – imply restrictions on how it can be spent. Analysis of interviews with lottery winners shows that interviewees use earmarking of the prize money as a strategy for avoiding the pitfalls associated with a lottery win. Conceptions of lottery prize money as ‘a lot’ or as ‘a little’, as shared or personal, and as an opportunity or a risk, influences the ends for which it is earmarked: for self‐serving spending, a ‘normal’ living standard, paying off loans, saving for designated purposes, or for economic security and independence. Clearly defining and earmarking lottery prize money thus helps lottery winners construe their sudden wealth, not as a risk, but as ‘pennies from heaven.’
    March 24, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12073   open full text
  • Towards intensive parenting? Changes in the composition and determinants of mothers' and fathers' time with children 1992–2006.
    Lyn Craig, Abigail Powell, Ciara Smyth.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 17, 2014
    Contemporary expectations of good parenting hold that focused, intensive parental attention is essential to children's development. Parental input is viewed as a key determinant in children's social, psychological and educational outcomes, with the early years particularly crucial. However, increased rates of maternal employment mean that more parents are juggling work and family commitments and have less non‐work time available to devote to children. Yet studies find that parental childcare time has increased over recent decades. In this paper, we explore the detail of this trend using data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Time Use Survey (TUS), 1992 and 2006. To investigate whether discourses on intensive parenting are reflected in behaviour, we examine a greater range of parent–child activities than has been undertaken to date, looking at trends in active childcare time (disaggregated into talk‐based, physical and accompanying care activities); time in childcare as a secondary activity; time spent in the company of children in leisure activities; and time spent in the company of children in total. We also investigate whether the influence of factors known to predict parental time with children (gender, education, employment status and the age of children) have changed over time. We contextualize our analyses within social and economic trends in Australia and find a compositional change in parental time, with more active childcare occurring within less overall time, which suggests more intensive, child‐centred parenting. Fathers' parent–child time, particularly in physical care, increased more than mothers' (from a much lower base), and tertiary education no longer predicts significantly higher childcare time.
    March 17, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12035   open full text
  • The materiality of mathematics: Presenting mathematics at the blackboard.
    Christian Greiffenhagen.
    British Journal of Sociology. March 12, 2014
    Sociology has been accused of neglecting the importance of material things in human life and the material aspects of social practices. Efforts to correct this have recently been made, with a growing concern to demonstrate the materiality of social organization, not least through attention to objects and the body. As a result, there have been a plethora of studies reporting the social construction and effects of a variety of material objects as well as studies that have explored the material dimensions of a diversity of practices. In different ways these studies have questioned the Cartesian dualism of a strict separation of ‘mind’ and ‘body’. However, it could be argued that the idea of the mind as immaterial has not been entirely banished and lingers when it comes to discussing abstract thinking and reasoning. The aim of this article is to extend the material turn to abstract thought, using mathematics as a paradigmatic example. This paper explores how writing mathematics (on paper, blackboards, or even in the air) is indispensable for doing and thinking mathematics. The paper is based on video recordings of lectures in formal logic and investigates how mathematics is presented at the blackboard. The paper discusses the iconic character of blackboards in mathematics and describes in detail a number of inscription practices of presenting mathematics at the blackboard (such as the use of lines and boxes, the designation of particular regions for specific mathematical purposes, as well as creating an ‘architecture’ visualizing the overall structure of the proof). The paper argues that doing mathematics really is ‘thinking with eyes and hands’ (Latour 1986). Thinking in mathematics is inextricably interwoven with writing mathematics.
    March 12, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12037   open full text
  • Reading self‐help literature in Russia: governmentality, psychology and subjectivity.
    Suvi Salmenniemi, Mariya Vorona.
    British Journal of Sociology. January 16, 2014
    Self‐help has become a booming business over the past decades and an increasingly visible part of popular media culture worldwide. The paper analyzes the arrival and effects of this cultural technology in post‐Soviet Russia after more than seventy years of socialism. It examines how Russians are engaging with popular psychology self‐help as a technology of the self and how they are making it meaningful in their lives. Drawing on a set of one‐to‐one and focus group interviews conducted with self‐help readers, it examines how these individuals negotiate the new ethics and the normative models of personhood put forward by the self‐help genre. It argues that popular psychology has offered a new language for making sense of the self and the social world, and highlights how the readers critically engage with the normalizing power of popular psychology by drawing on a number of local historically sedimented discourses.
    January 16, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12039   open full text
  • Taste clusters of music and drugs: evidence from three analytic levels.
    Mike Vuolo, Christopher Uggen, Sarah Lageson.
    British Journal of Sociology. January 16, 2014
    This article examines taste clusters of musical preferences and substance use among adolescents and young adults. Three analytic levels are considered: fixed effects analyses of aggregate listening patterns and substance use in US radio markets, logistic regressions of individual genre preferences and drug use from a nationally representative survey of US youth, and arrest and seizure data from a large American concert venue. A consistent picture emerges from all three levels: rock music is positively associated with substance use, with some substance‐specific variability across rock sub‐genres. Hip hop music is also associated with higher use, while pop and religious music are associated with lower use. These results are robust to fixed effects models that account for changes over time in radio markets, a comprehensive battery of controls in the individual‐level survey, and concert data establishing the co‐occurrence of substance use and music listening in the same place and time. The results affirm a rich tradition of qualitative and experimental studies, demonstrating how symbolic boundaries are simultaneously drawn around music and drugs.
    January 16, 2014   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12045   open full text
  • On the almost inconceivable misunderstandings concerning the subject of value‐free social science.
    Donald Black.
    British Journal of Sociology. December 10, 2013
    A value judgment says what is good or bad, and value‐free social science simply means social science free of value judgments. Yet many sociologists regard value‐free social science as undesirable or impossible and readily make value judgments in the name of sociology. Often they display confusion about such matters as the meaning of value‐free social science, value judgments internal and external to social science, value judgments as a subject of social science, the relevance of objectivity for value‐free social science, and the difference between the human significance of social science and value‐free social science. But why so many sociologists are so value‐involved – and generally so unscientific – is sociologically understandable: The closest and most distant subjects attract the least scientific ideas. And during the past century sociologists have become increasingly close to their human subject. The debate about value‐free social science is also part of an epistemological counterrevolution of humanists (including many sociologists) against the more scientific social scientists who invaded and threatened to expropriate the human subject during the past century.
    December 10, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12034   open full text
  • Techno economic systems and excessive consumption: a political economy of ‘pathological’ gambling.
    Gerda Reith.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 30, 2013
    This article argues that gambling is a paradigmatic form of consumption that captures the intensified logic at the heart of late modern capitalist societies. As well as a site of intensified consumption, it claims that gambling has also become the location of what has been described as a new form of ‘social pathology’ related to excess play. Drawing on Castells' (1996) notion of techno‐economic systems, it explores the ways that intersections between technology, capital and states have generated the conditions for this situation, and critiques the unequal distribution of gambling environments that result. It argues that, while the products of these systems are consumed on a global scale, the risks associated with them tend to be articulated in bio‐psychological discourses of ‘pathology’ which are typical of certain types of knowledge that have salience in neo‐liberal societies, and which work to conceal wider structural relationships. We argue that a deeper understanding of the political and cultural economy of gambling environments is necessary, and provide a synoptic overview of the conditions upon which gambling expansion is based. This perspective highlights parallels with the wider global economy of finance capital, as well as the significance of intensified consumption, of which gambling is an exemplary instance. It also reveals the existence of a geo‐political dispersal of ‘harms’, conceived as deteriorations of financial, temporal and social relationships, which disproportionately affect vulnerable social groups. From this, we urge an understanding of commercial gambling based on a critique of the wider social body of gambling environments within techno economic systems, rather than the (flawed) individual bodies within them.
    October 30, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12050   open full text
  • Governing multicultural populations and family life.
    Suki Ali.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 29, 2013
    Shortly after coming to power in Britain, the Conservative–Liberal Democratic alliance placed family life at the heart of their political agenda, and set out their plans to reform adoption. The paper draws upon debates about the reforms and considers them in articulation with concerns about health of the nation expressed in political pronouncements on ‘broken Britain’ and the failures of ‘state multiculturalism’. The paper considers the debates about domestic (transracial) and intercountry adoption, and uses feminist postcolonial perspectives to argue that we can only understand what are expressed as national issues within a transnational and postcolonial framework which illuminate the processes of state and institutional race‐making. The paper analyses three key instances of biopower and governmentality in the adoption debates: the population, the normalizing family and the individual. The paper argues that we need to understand the reforms as part of a wider concern with the ‘problem’ of multicultural belonging, and that the interlocking discourses of nation, family and identities are crucial to the constitution and regulation of gendered, racialized subjects.
    October 29, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12046   open full text
  • ‘A place for men to come and do their thing’: constructing masculinities in betting shops in London.
    Rebecca Cassidy.
    British Journal of Sociology. October 29, 2013
    During fieldwork conducted with workers and customers in betting shops in London research participants consistently conceptualized betting shops as masculine spaces in contrast to the femininity of other places including home and the bingo hall. According to this argument, betting on horses and dogs was ‘men's business’ and betting shops were ‘men's worlds’. Two explanations were offered to account for this situation. The first suggested that betting was traditionally a pastime enjoyed by men rather than women. The second was that betting is intrinsically more appealing to men because it is based on calculation and measurement, and women prefer more intuitive, simpler challenges. I use interviews with older people to describe how the legalisation of betting in cash in 1961 changed the geography of betting. I then draw upon interviews with regular customers in order to show how knowledge about betting is shared within rather than between genders. Finally, I use my experience of training and working as a cashier to describe how the particular hegemonic masculinity found in betting shops in London is maintained through myriad everyday practices which reward certain kinds of gendered performances while at the same time suppressing alternatives. The article shows how particular spaces may become gendered as an unanticipated consequence of legislation and how contingent gendered associations are both naturalized and, at the same time, subjected to intense attention.
    October 29, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12044   open full text
  • Public sphere as assemblage: the cultural politics of roadside memorialization.
    Elaine Campbell.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    This paper investigates contemporary academic accounts of the public sphere. In particular, it takes stock of post‐Habermasian public sphere scholarship, and acknowledges a lively and variegated debate concerning the multiple ways in which individuals engage in contemporary political affairs. A critical eye is cast over a range of key insights which have come to establish the parameters of what ‘counts’ as a/the public sphere, who can be involved, and where and how communicative networks are established. This opens up the conceptual space for re‐imagining a/the public sphere as an assemblage. Making use of recent developments in Deleuzian‐inspired assemblage theory – most especially drawn from DeLanda's (2006) ‘new philosophy of society’ – the paper sets out an alternative perspective on the notion of the public sphere, and regards it as a space of connectivity brought into being through a contingent and heterogeneous assemblage of discursive, visual and performative practices. This is mapped out with reference to the cultural politics of roadside memorialization. However, a/the public sphere as an assemblage is not simply a ‘social construction’ brought into being through a logic of connectivity, but is an emergent and ephemeral space which reflexively nurtures and assembles the cultural politics (and political cultures) of which it is an integral part. The discussion concludes, then, with a consideration of the contribution of assemblage theory to public sphere studies. (Also see Campbell 2009a)
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12030   open full text
  • UN genocide commemoration, transnational scenes of mourning and the global project of learning from atrocity.
    Tracey Skillington.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    This paper offers a critical analytic reconstruction of some of the main symbolic properties of annual UN Holocaust and Rwandan genocide commemorations since 2005. Applying a discourse‐historical approach (Wodak and Meyer 2010), it retraces how themes of guilt, responsibility, evil and redemption are woven together across annual commemorative performances in the hope of stabilizing shared patterns of cultural translation of the significance of these atrocities to globally dispersed communities. UN commemorative discourse characteristically links memories of Holocaust and Rwandan trauma in a ‘chain of communication’ with those of other episodes of brutality (e.g., Cambodia, Bosnia and Darfur) chiefly to convey the continuity of human barbarity across time and endorse certain presuppositions regarding the fate of a fallen humanity in this more ‘post‐secular’ age. As scenes of mourning, UN commemorations unite participating international delegations in their expressions of grief for the victims of ‘preventable tragedies’ in the past but also, it must be said, their uncertainty regarding new horrors likely to occur in the future. The duty to remember is reiterated continuously as both a mark of respect to those who have already perished and as a warning of atrocities yet to unfold. This paper explores how the historical constancy of violence is interpreted by the UN through a detailed critical analysis of its recently inaugurated ‘remembrance through education’ programme aimed at a transnational collective learning from atrocity.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12029   open full text
  • Strangers in a strange land: coping with imprisonment as a racial or ethnic foreign national inmate.
    Candace Kruttschnitt, Anja Dirkzwager, Liam Kennedy.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    A wide range of scholarship examining the global effects of neo‐liberalism draws attention to the precarious position of individuals who are not seen as part of the social body. While immigrants, racial minorities, and common criminals are central to this discourse, relatively little research has examined how the experiences of these individuals may vary based on statuses other than citizenship when they are imprisoned. Our research focuses on the interactions (between prisoners and between prisoners and correctional staff) of a racially diverse group of Dutch foreign national prisoners incarcerated in England. Although all of these prisoners clearly saw themselves as ‘outsiders,’ visible minorities faced a unique set of challenges relative to their White counterparts. We consider both the practical and theoretical import of these findings.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12028   open full text
  • Mutualism, resource competition and opposing movements among Turkish organizations in Amsterdam and Berlin, 1965–2000.
    Floris Vermeulen.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    This article seeks to understand environmental effects on associational interdependencies, be they competitive or collaborative, in a polarized organizational population. To do so, it builds on the density‐dependent model and the ecology of ideologies. Especially interested in the effect of context on density‐dependent processes, I compare different Turkish ideological movements in Amsterdam and Berlin. Amsterdam represents an open and supportive environment for such movements, whereas Berlin constitutes a more closed and hostile one. By analysing the founding and disbanding rates of Turkish immigrant organizations in Amsterdam and Berlin during the period 1965–2000, the article demonstrates how the increasing density of Turkish ideologies has affected interdependencies in two main ways: by heightening competition, particularly between ideologically similar organizations, and by increasing counter activities between opposing movements. It also shows that the influence of context is limited. An open environment does not significantly influence the vitality rates of ideologies or further collaboration among or between them. On the contrary, it seemingly increases competition and fragmentation because more resources and opportunities are available. More signs of collaboration and mutualism are found in Berlin's closed environment.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12027   open full text
  • Neighbourhood social ties: how much do residential, physical and virtual mobility matter?
    Gundi Knies.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    Following up on the prediction by classical sociological theorists that neighbours will become irrelevant as societies become more mobile, this research examines the strength of people's social ties with neighbours and the associations thereof with residential, physical and virtual mobility using longitudinal data for Germany. Unlike previous studies, the research considers the three forms of mobility simultaneously and contrasts its effects on social ties with neighbours to those with family. The results show that residential and physical mobility are negatively associated with social ties to neighbours and positively with ties to family. Virtual mobility does not weaken social ties with neighbours but ties with family. The positive association between mobility and social ties with family may not be strong enough to ascertain that people maintain as close social ties to others in the future as it does not outweigh the negative association with visiting neighbours.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12026   open full text
  • Corporate corruption of the environment: sustainability as a process of compromise.
    Daniel Nyberg, Christopher Wright.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    A key response to environmental degradation, climate change and declining biodiversity has been the growing adoption of market principles in an effort to better value the social good of nature. Through concepts such as ‘natural capitalism’ and ‘corporate environmentalism’, nature is increasingly viewed as a domain of capitalist endeavour. In this article, we use convention theory and a pluralist understanding of social goods to investigate how the social good of the environment is usurped by the alternate social good of the market. Through analysis of interviews with sustainability managers and corporate documentation, we highlight how organizational actors employ compromise to temporally settle disputes between competing claims about environmental activities. Our findings contribute to an understanding of the processes of empirically grounded critique and the under‐theorized concept of compromise between social goods. Rather than protecting the environment, the corporate promotion of sustainability facilitates the corruption of the social good of the environment and its conversion into a market commodity.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12025   open full text
  • Risk, interest groups and the definition of crisis: the case of volcanic ash.
    Bridget M. Hutter, Sally Lloyd‐Bostock.
    British Journal of Sociology. September 02, 2013
    This paper considers a key aspect of the ‘risk society’ thesis: the belief that we should be able to manage risks and control the world around us. In particular it focuses on the interface between risk and risk events as socially constructed and the insights that ‘critical situations’ give us into ‘the routine and mundane’, the otherwise taken for granted assumptions underlying risk regulation. It does this with reference to the events precipitated by the April 2010 volcanic eruption in the Eyjafjallajökull area of Iceland. The resulting cloud of volcanic ash spread across Europe and much of Europe's airspace was closed to civil aviation for six days, with far reaching consequences including huge financial losses for airlines. The social processes of defining and reacting to risk and crisis both reveal and generate dilemmas and challenges in regulation. This paper examines the role of different interest groups in defining risk expectations and thereby redefining the ash crisis as a regulatory crisis.
    September 02, 2013   doi: 10.1111/1468-4446.12024   open full text