Leisure, Lifestyle, and the New Middle Class: A Case Study

Leisure, Lifestyle, and the New Middle Class: A Case Study

Leisure, Lifestyle, and the New Middle Class: A Case Study

Leisure, Lifestyle, and the New Middle Class: A Case Study

Synopsis

In this valuable study, conducted within the theoretical context associated with the work of Pierre Bourdieu, Derek Wynne looks at how the 'new middle class' of the late twentieth century goes about constructing and defending its social identity.

Excerpt

still be seen as the primary determinant of identity.

Using Bourdieu’s theoretical schema the book considers (i) the extent to which the new middle class or service class can be considered an homogenous grouping; (ii) whether the formation of the new middle class can be primarily understood through a social mobility accounted for by an increasing ‘credentialism’ or (iii) whether other forms of social mobility associated with occupational change have resulted in a new middle class which is essentially fragmented.

Following a discussion of previous work the book reports the findings of a case study undertaken on a private housing estate located in the Cheshire ‘green belt’. The findings are supportive of a cultural heterogeneity within the new middle class(es) which lends support to contemporary sociological theorising on both the formation of the new middle class and contemporary cultural change.

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