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Between Afropolitans and new Sankaras

Class mobility and the reproduction of academics in Burkina Faso

Michelle Engeler

present-day students dream. Furthermore, one of the concept’s critiques, which argues that the term promotes the rapacious consumerism of the African elites who represent that “mobile Afropolitan class” (raised by, e.g., Dabiri 2014 , 2016 ; Gehrmann

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Introduction

Ethnographic engagements with global elites

Paul Robert Gilbert and Jessica Sklair

distribution of income from labor and the unequal distribution of inherited wealth ( Yanagisako 2015: 490 ). Despite his attempt to steer “as far clear of a class analysis as possible in a study of wealth inequality in capitalist societies,” Piketty has, it

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A gendered ethnography of elites

Women, inequality, and social reproduction

Luna Glucksberg

reproduction of elites and inequalities through the lenses of both class and gender. Class and gender are intertwined, produced, and reproduced through one another, implicating the personal, intimate, and familial relations in which they exist, as well as the

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Elite ethnography in an insecure place

The methodological implications of “studying up” in Pakistan

Rosita Armytage

unique and particular challenges of hierarchy and access that are further complicated by the contrasting positionalities of the researcher and those they research. Beyond class and status, the researcher’s gender, age, and nationality intersect with those

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Introduction

Reading twenty-first-century capitalism through the lens of E. P. Thompson

Kathleen M. Millar

E. P. Thompson's social history of capitalism has enduring relevance for anthropological analyses of economic crisis, precarious labor, and class struggle today. This introduction provides a synthesis of the ethnographic cases in this theme section by reflecting on several impulses in Thompson's work that both resonate with and challenge current ethnography of political and economic change. Thompson's focus on moments of transition, his conception of human subjectivity as a process of “making,” and his view of class struggle as arising from tensions between old and new orders bring history and political economy into the study of emergent social formations. Inspired by Thompson's critique of rigid theoretical models, this introduction suggests ways not only to adopt but also to modify the historian's insights for ethnographic work on contemporary capitalism.

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Managing Time and Making Space

Canadian Students' Motivations for Study in Australia

Heather Barnick

This article examines the ways in which Canadian students on an exchange or study abroad programme in Australia articulated the value of their experience in connection with time and, more particularly, time constraints. Where Canadian universities often promote study abroad programmes in connection with the global knowledge-based economy, students' desires to travel abroad were more often rooted in a desire to take 'time out' while remaining productive towards the completion of future goals. Students' narratives reveal a connection between time management, travel, and the formations of a class identity. Rather than analysing time strictly as a form of capital, however, insights are generated around time as practice, that is, how time becomes an important factor in students' continual negotiations of space, social relationships, and what could be called a 'lifetime itinerary'.

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Emancipation as social equality

Subaltern politics in contemporary India

Indrajit Roy

contributors to the experience of social inequality and often concomitant with the experience of poverty. The group-based perpetuation of social inequality has led sensitive scholars to observe that categories such as class and culture “occur together and

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Introduction

Migrants, mobility, and mobilization

Pauline Gardiner Barber and Winnie Lem

This issue brings together the work of researchers who seek to illuminate the class configurations of contemporary global diasporas. Contributions proceed by problematizing the relationship between political mobilization and the class locations of women and men as they negotiate and renegotiate the social conditions under which they make a living as émigrés, people who are subject to and participants in the processes of global change. Although class and culture, as well as mobility and fixity, are often presented as oppositional lenses though which to view global transformations, articles in this issue explore the possibilities for translation of particularized local or cultural concerns into broader collective mobilizations of class activism, nationalist claims, or struggles for entitlement in the circumscribed political spaces migrants seek to create. The gender, ethnic, local, national, and other cultural components of identity and class formation are made explicit as contributors question how and why political struggles and activism may, or indeed may not, be carried forward in geographic and social border crossings as well as citizenship and migration scenarios. It is the contention of each contributor that any instance of activism, and also its absence, requires sustained critical examination of the politics and economics of its production and reproduction.

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Jean-Christophe Marcel

Maurice Halbwachs, Les Classes Sociales, édition critique de Gilles Montigny, préface de Christian Baudelot, Paris : Presses Universitaires de France, 2008, pp. 300.

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Arnaldo Bagnasco

In 2004, the beginning of the political year was marked by an intense

focus on the middle class. Even earlier, during the closing months

of the previous year, the public had been alerted to the middle class

as an issue by virtue of journalistic investigations documenting the

malaise of social groups, which, all things considered, had been supposed

to be in good or passable health up to that point. There was

talk of poverty among vulnerable sections of the population, but not

yet of the impoverishment of the middle classes. Whether or not the

middle class was indeed becoming poorer then became the main focus

of the discussion. In this chapter we shall try to see how the question

emerged, how far it corresponds with the facts, and, finally, its significance

for Italian politics. With this in mind, we shall be asking, in particular,

whether in future the crisis of the middle class is destined to be

an important topic and recognized as such in the political arena.