What class are you? Who cares?

classFriday 3 May, 7:00 pm for 7:30, Unity House, Fennel Street Loughborough.
Discussion to be introduced by Charles Walker.

In a divided 21st Century Britain, how do we define class? Is it even something worth talking about?

Based on a BBC survey with over 160,000 responses, sociologists Mike Savage and Fiona Devine have developed a new model of class based on Bourdieu’s three forms of capital: economic, social and cultural. You can estimate which of their seven classes you belong to using the BBC’s class calculator here. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22000973 But is Bourdieu’s model the best way of talking about class? And what does it all mean for bringing about political change?

The study can be found here. http://soc.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/03/12/0038038513481128.full.pdf

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3 Responses to What class are you? Who cares?

  1. grossner says:

    It was not right on Friday to be pointed to as foreigners.

    • I am very sorry that you felt uncomfortable last night. I am sure nobody present actually intended to be disrespectful.

      The aim of the Friday Room is to promote thoughtful discussion between people a wide range of views and backgrounds and I am sure that all members will agree that, while we may sometimes differ strongly in our opinions, we should always treat each other with respect.

  2. The idea of “Class” exists in two domains, academic and popular.
    This new scheme sounds as if it might be a useful new way of looking at things in academic studies.
    The popular, colloquial perception of “Class” is another matter.
    I had a look at the link Charles sent and considered doing the test for a moment and found the idea surprisingly repellent. I felt a bit the same as when a conversation turns to star signs and someone wants to know what mine is. My gut feeling on these occasions is: I DON’T WANT THIS CRAP IN MY HEAD
    “Class” In popular discourse is a set of stereotypes, which I don’t want intruding on how I see others or how others see me.
    The meaning of the word varies according to context. I think in popular discourse it is largely a remnant of the very rigid, almost tribal, divisions of a century ago where ancestry was all.
    “Class” in Marxist thinking was about economics. In this BBC definition it has a different meaning, more about culture.
    Then there is the far more complex definitions used by pollsters and in market surveys.
    I suggest that it is now a term which, having acquired a number of loaded meanings, is a liability in political discussion and should best be avoided.
    It is unfortunate that the Labour party with trades union funding, is too easily perceived as a tribal entity.

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