Sociology G671

Sociology G671

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  • Created on: 24-05-10 10:42


  • Contrasted Concept
  • No agreed way of defining it

Identity as Sameness

  • Based on characteristics and features
  • In order to define yourself, you take a specific approach
    • e.g. listening to specific music
    • or wearing specific clothes

Identity as Difference

  • Seen as opposite
    • characteristics and features that make you different when compared with others
  • Chooses personally to be different from the main peer group activities e.g. Drama ahead of football

Woodward: to have identity choice is involved; individuals personally choose to identify themselves with specific people

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Working Class Culture

  • Jobs based on manual work or unskilled labour
    • e.g. coal industry or shipbuilding industry (dominated the job market in the north)
  • Traditional Gender Roles
    • Father: Breadwinner
    • Mother: Homemaker
  • Politically linked with the labour party/trade unions
    • protected their rights as workers
  • Lived for the moment, immediate gratification, didn't save money for the future


  • Employment based on the service sector - office based jobs
  • More shared responsibilities between men and women
  • A rise in the number of homeowners

Skeggs (1997): found women from working class backgrounds distant themselves from traditional gender roles as they want to be seen as respectable

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Middle Class

  • Traditionally based on professions such as doctors, solicitors or teachers
  • Had educational achievement and university education
  • High in Cultural Capital: e.g. foreign holidays and appreciation for different cultures
  • Deferred Gratification: saved money now, enjoys the luxuries later in life

Distance between working and middle class has changed because of the changed in the jobs market mean now jobs between these two classes are not distinctly different


  • Carried out 50 in-depth interviews
  • Sample of teachers, doctors/both middle class
  • Sample didn't refer to class
  • Fear of being more superior than someone else
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Upper Class

"Socially closed" (Includes two sub-groups)

Traditional Upper Class

  • Aristocracy
  • Born into wealth
  • Economic Capital: Make money from land owned
  • Associated with inter-marriages (from the same social background, increases links)
  • Cultural Capital: valuing hieriacy and past

Super Rich

  • Achieved wealth through hardwork or merit (could inherit through the lottery)
  • Economic Capital
  • Associated with "The Glamorous Lifestyle"
  • Values material goods and brand names
  • Social Capital (networking, EXAMPLE OF SUPERRICH ARE THE BECKHAMS
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