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56 articles matched your search for the keywords:

Europe, European, nation, citizen, identity, young adult

In One Ear and Out the Other: Unmasking Masculinities in the Caribbean Classroom

Jose Parry
Sociological Research Online 1 (2) 2

Keywords: Caribbean Education; Gender; Gender identity; Masculinities; Secondary Education
Abstract: Derived from qualitative data collected for a research project based at the Institute of Social and Economic Research at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica, this paper explores classroom gendered responses of High School students in Jamaica, Barbados and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The account shows how teachers interpret gendered responses as confirmation of natural and necessary differences between male and female pupils. It is these perceived differences which they use to justify the case for single sex education, particularly for males. Conversely the paper argues that male gendered responses are informed by cultural expectations which translate into pedagogical relationships. These expectations reflect a version of masculinity (emerging from the historical experiences of white patriarchal chattel slavery in the West Indies) which equates education with the female side of a male/female dichotomy. The paper explores ways in which schools encourage this version of 'masculinity' at the same time as rendering it educationally inappropriate. In doing so the paper addresses issues which have been raised about male educational failure in recent British research.

Statistics as Organizational Products

Carol Jane Thomas
Sociological Research Online 1 (3) 5

Keywords: Census; Organizational Coordination; Data Creation; Evidence; Informal/Formal Economy; Organizations; Statistical Systems; Statistics; Unemployment; Unwitting Testimony
Abstract: The paper argues that statistics should be seen as organizational products and that growth in the range and variety of statistics testifies to growth in the power of organizations. The paper emphasises the importance of identifying the functions of statistical systems, and recommends a genealogical approach to help identify the unwitting testimony given by the assumptions and motivations associated with the categorizations and data creation procedures used in the production of statistics. The paper examines the motivations, assumptions, and functions associated with statistical systems involving the Census of Population, the British National Food Survey, economic management, and unemployment. The discussion focuses on the evidence these case studies provide on the role of statistics in society and of the influence of organizational meanings on society.

The Ambiguities of Football, Politics, Culture, and Social Transformation in Latin America

Bar-on
Sociological Research Online 2 (4) 2

Keywords: Class Warfare; Culture; Europe; Football (Soccer); Latin America; 'Ludic'; Nationalism; Pagan Religion; Politics; Social Transformation; Sport and Games
Abstract: In this article, I attempt to highlight the relationships between football (soccer), politics, culture, and social change in Latin American societies. The essential argument of the paper is that football in Latin America has tended to reinforce nationalistic, authoritarian, class-based, and gender-specific notions of identity and culture. The few efforts of Latin American professional football clubs, individual players, and fans to resist these oppressive tendencies and 'positively' influence the wider society with public positions on pressing social and political concerns have been issue-oriented, short-term, and generally unsystematic in their assessment of the larger societal ills. In Europe, however, there has been a stronger politicization of football directed towards social change by both professional football clubs and supporters. This European tendency, like its Latin American counterparts, has also failed to tackle wider systemic and structural issues in capitalist European societies. On both continents, the 'ludic' notion of games has been undermined by the era of football professionalism, its excessive materialism, and a corresponding 'win-at-all-costs' philosophy. In the future, the world's most popular game will continue to be utilized as a political tool of mass manipulation and social control: a kind of mass secular pagan religion. As a footnote not mentioned in the essay, the 1998 World Cup in France, a worldwide event with 32 countries and an estimated 2.5 billion fans watching the matches in the stadiums and on television, will be used by the international French Evangelical Alliance called 'Sport et Foi Mondial 98' ('Sport and Faith World Cup 98') to bring the Gospel to the greatest number of people in the world: Chaplaincy work among the athletes, a Bible-Expo at a strategic location, evangelical street concerts, evangelical messages and banners in the stadiums, etc. In this instance, the new pagan and secular religion of football clashes with the traditional Christian Church - itself crippled by a loss of mass supporters and the rise of alternative secular lords. In both cases, football unwittingly acts as an agent of mass indoctrination rather than challenging established dogmas, or serving as a vehicle for deeper, systemic social change.

Social Theory and European Transformation: Is there a European Society?

Gerard Delanty
Sociological Research Online 3 (1) 1

Keywords: Citizenship; Culture; Democracy; Identity; Knowledge; Europe
Abstract: The concept 'society' in social theory has generally presupposed notions of cultural cohesion and social integration associated with national societies and the framework of modernity. This older idea of the social emerged out of the experience with institution-building associated with the rise of the nation-state and the transition from 'tradition' to 'modernity'. The question whether European integration can articulate a conception of the social independent of national society is a major challenge for social theory. This paper explores changing conceptions of the social in recent social theory and applies some of these ideas to European integration. It is argued that we need to rethink our notion of society: instead of a 'transition' the kind of social change we are experiencing today is that of social 'transformation', a concept which suggests less the 'end of the social' than an emerging 'network' society based on knowledge. Thus instead of trying to reproduce on the supranational level a model that has reached its limits on the national level, European integration needs to give expression to the emerging power of knowledge. Rejecting the notion of the demos and the ethnos as inappropriate to European integration, the case is made for a discursive understanding of democracy and knowedge.

Sustainability and Modernity in the European Union: A Frame Theory Approach to Policy-Making

Calloni and Mikrakis Triandafyllidou and Fotiou
Sociological Research Online 3 (1) 2

Keywords: Environmental Policy; European Union; Frame Analysis; Qualitative Methods; Sustainable Development; Trans-European Networks
Abstract: Frame analysis has been often used by scholars studying New Social Movements to analyze their discourses and their ability to mobilise people. This paper refers to the application of 'frame analysis' to a different context, namely to discourses of both social movements and institutional actors in the context of public policy-making. More particularly, the study is concerned with the discourses of social actors who participate in the making of EU environmental policy. The advantages and limitations of frame analysis as a method for analysing discourse in an institutional context are discussed. Two case-studies are used to highlight the pros and cons of the method. First, the competing discourses of environmental organisations, business associations, and EU officials with regard to environmental sustainability and the Fifth Action Programme are examined. The second case study addresses the issue of Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-Ts) and examines different types of framing of sustainable mobility developed by policy actors. Conclusions are drawn with regard to the contribution of frame theory in the analysis of policy-making processes.

Sociological Practice: The Politics of Identities and Futures

Irwin Deutscher
Sociological Research Online 3 (1) 3

Keywords: Environmental Policy; European Union; Frame Analysis; Qualitative Methods; Sustainable Development; Trans-European Networks
Abstract: Frame analysis has been often used by scholars studying New Social Movements to analyze their discourses and their ability to mobilise people. This paper refers to the application of 'frame analysis' to a different context, namely to discourses of both social movements and institutional actors in the context of public policy-making. More particularly, the study is concerned with the discourses of social actors who participate in the making of EU environmental policy. The advantages and limitations of frame analysis as a method for analysing discourse in an institutional context are discussed. Two case-studies are used to highlight the pros and cons of the method. First, the competing discourses of environmental organisations, business associations, and EU officials with regard to environmental sustainability and the Fifth Action Programme are examined. The second case study addresses the issue of Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-Ts) and examines different types of framing of sustainable mobility developed by policy actors. Conclusions are drawn with regard to the contribution of frame theory in the analysis of policy-making processes.

The Industrial Organization of Sociology

Tony Tam
Sociological Research Online 3 (1) 4

Keywords: Environmental Policy; European Union; Frame Analysis; Qualitative Methods; Sustainable Development; Trans-European Networks
Abstract: Frame analysis has been often used by scholars studying New Social Movements to analyze their discourses and their ability to mobilise people. This paper refers to the application of 'frame analysis' to a different context, namely to discourses of both social movements and institutional actors in the context of public policy-making. More particularly, the study is concerned with the discourses of social actors who participate in the making of EU environmental policy. The advantages and limitations of frame analysis as a method for analysing discourse in an institutional context are discussed. Two case-studies are used to highlight the pros and cons of the method. First, the competing discourses of environmental organisations, business associations, and EU officials with regard to environmental sustainability and the Fifth Action Programme are examined. The second case study addresses the issue of Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-Ts) and examines different types of framing of sustainable mobility developed by policy actors. Conclusions are drawn with regard to the contribution of frame theory in the analysis of policy-making processes.

Whose Future? Whose Sociology? a Response to Tam and Deutscher

Bogusia Temple
Sociological Research Online 3 (1) 5

Keywords: Environmental Policy; European Union; Frame Analysis; Qualitative Methods; Sustainable Development; Trans-European Networks
Abstract: Frame analysis has been often used by scholars studying New Social Movements to analyze their discourses and their ability to mobilise people. This paper refers to the application of 'frame analysis' to a different context, namely to discourses of both social movements and institutional actors in the context of public policy-making. More particularly, the study is concerned with the discourses of social actors who participate in the making of EU environmental policy. The advantages and limitations of frame analysis as a method for analysing discourse in an institutional context are discussed. Two case-studies are used to highlight the pros and cons of the method. First, the competing discourses of environmental organisations, business associations, and EU officials with regard to environmental sustainability and the Fifth Action Programme are examined. The second case study addresses the issue of Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-Ts) and examines different types of framing of sustainable mobility developed by policy actors. Conclusions are drawn with regard to the contribution of frame theory in the analysis of policy-making processes.

The Kosovan War, 1998-99: Transformations of State, War and Genocide in the Global Revolution

Martin Shaw
Sociological Research Online 4 (2) shaw

Keywords: Genocide; International; Intervention; State; War
Abstract: This paper outlines an analysis of the Kosovan war of 1998-99 in the light of historical-sociological perspectives on the contemporary state and on war and genocide. It argues that Kosova poses new challenges which threaten to relegitimate war as a means of politics, after the earlier implication of total war with genocide, unless alternative forms of international intervention are developed.

Agricultural Biotechnology: Its Recent Evolution and Implications for Agrofood Political Economy

Fred Buttel
Sociological Research Online 4 (3) buttel

Keywords: Agriculture; Biotechnology; Consumption; European Union; Food; Political Economy; Social Movements; Trade; World Trade Organization
Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the recent development of the agricultural biotechnology sector and suggests what are likely to be some of the major issues in agrofood biotechnology in the future. I argue that while biotechnology has become increasingly entrenched as an approach to agrofood research and development, there are enormous public and especially corporate resources committed to biotechnology, and the growth of GMO market share in U.S. soybean, corn, and cotton production has been impressive, there has recently been growth of social resistance to biotechnology that casts the technology's and industry's future in some doubt. In addition to discussing the extent and limits of social resistance to biotechnology, I explore several other facets of agrofood biotechnology--global consolidation of the biotechnology industry, trade in GMO-produced food products, and the new corporate focus on "value-enhanced crops"--that will have a critical bearing on its future. I conclude by suggesting that while social resistance to agrofood biotechnology is very unlikely to derail the industry, public opposition will shape corporate strategy and could possibly shape research priorities in public biotechnology research.

Structure, Strategy, Sustainability: What Future for New Social Movement Theory?

Alana Lentin
Sociological Research Online 4 (3) lentin

Keywords: Collective Action; Identity; New Social Movements; Structural Transformation; Transnationalisation
Abstract: The theoretical domain developed for the study of New Social Movements (NSMs) in the early 1980s has recently been largely abandoned by its main advocates. Increasingly, the cross-class, 'post-materialist' movements of the 1970s and 1980s, typified by the issues of environment, peace and feminism, cease to pose a radical challenge to contemporary western politics. This paper revisits the theoretical work of three of the European voices central to understandings of the emergence and success of New Social Movements. Claus Offe, Alberto Melucci and Alain Touraine succeed in amalgamating an essential emphasis on structural transformation and an understanding of the importance of identity in bringing about 'new' collective action in the 1970s and 1980s. In response, to the significant decrease in European work on the NSM phenomenon today the paper proposes that the existing body of theory may be insufficient for describing collective action at the turn of the Millennium. The increasing predominance of 'identity' politics (e.g. in the realms of ethnicity and sexuality) in the arenas previously dominated by 'universalist', post-particularist themes; the institutionalisation of elements of NSM action and concerns; and the perceived appropriation by transnational agencies of the issues dominating original state-NSM struggles are cited as reasons for the need to develop a new language to describe contemporary collective action phenomena.

Discretion, 'Respectability' and Institutional Police Racism

P.A.J. Waddington
Sociological Research Online 4 (4) waddington

Keywords: Discrimination; Police Discretion; Police-Race Relations; Police Sub-Culture; Race And Ethnicity; Violence
Abstract:

Cash for Answers: the Association Between School Performance and Local Government Finance

Jon Mulberg
Sociological Research Online 5 (3) mulberg

Keywords: Examinations; GCSE.; Grant; LEA; Performance; Performance-related; Quasi-market; Schools; SSA; Tables
Abstract: One of the reasons that the publication and content of secondary school performance tables in England is such a controversial political issue is the introduction of quasi-market models in public services in the 1980's and 1990's. These models assume that the outcome of the educational process in schools can be separated from the inputs - the background of the pupils - and that schools are able to affect poor performance. Any research that shows that the examination results are associated with parental background attacks the concept of choice that is a major rationale for these models, and confronts the quasi-market approach, since it suggests that the outcomes are exogenous to the educational process. The paper suggests that the present approach to performance indicators is contradictory and confused.The paper offers a comprehensive examination of the association between socio-economic background and school examination results at the local authority level. It uses three measures of socio- economic status derived from local government finance, and shows a strong association between these and the five published indicators of educational performance, in an analysis covering the whole of England for the last three years. The evidence strongly suggests that that the tables reflect the background of pupils rather than the effects of educational professionals and local education authorities. It also offers critiques of the alternative indicators of improvement and 'value-addition', which are currently being developed.Since these performance tables are an element in the new performance-related pay of teachers, the study implies a critique of both UK educational policy and policy on pay. It also suggests the current trend to expand performance indicators to other public sectors is misdirected.

Youth Citizenship and Unemployment: The Case of Passive and Active Labour Market Policies towards the Young Unemployed in Greece

Gabriella Lazaridis and Maria Koumandraki
Sociological Research Online 5 (4) lazaridis

Keywords: youth, youth citizenship, Southern Europe, social policy, welfare, unemployment, employment
Abstract: This article concentrates on youth transitions into the labour market in one EU member state, Greece. The aim is to explore ways in which the Greek state has responded to the problem of youth unemployment, looking at policies (passive and active) introduced to address this. It reveals that state policies and social norms deeply embedded in the Greek culture, rather than encouraging acquisition of 'full-citizenship' and financial independence, restrict young people's chances for independence from the family. As is the case in other southern European countries, in Greece, the family and informal clientelistic networks of relatives and friends have acted as the primary source of economic and social support for young people. We argue that four co-centric circles circumscribe the type of citizenship available to a young person and have implications for young people's acquisition of full citizenship and financial independence: (a) the family, (b) friends and acquaintances, (c) changes in the labour market and (d) opportunities offered to the young unemployed through passive (benefits, social assistance) and active (vocational training) labour market policies available. With regard to young peoples' ability to become financially independent, these either exercise a centrifugal force, encouraging dependency upon others (especially parents and close friends) for care, guidance and support, or a centripetal force, encouraging them to assume full rights and responsibilities of adulthood.

The Basic Elements of a Systematic Theory of Ethnic Relations

John Rex
Sociological Research Online 6 (1) rex

Keywords: Empire; Ethnic Mobilisation; Ethnic Nations; Ethnies; Migration; Minorityintegration.; Modernising Nations; Post-imperial Nationalism; Primidrialism; Transnational Communities
Abstract: The theory of ethnic relations has developed ad hoc on an interdisciplinary basis. It has dealt with ethnicity in small communities, larger ethnic groups or "ethnies", ethnic nations, modernising nation states, subordinate nationalisms, the establishment of empires, post-imperial situations, transnational migrant communities and the political problems facing modernising nation states in dealing both with subordinate nationalisms and with migrant ethnic minorities.This paper seeks to deal with these various elements in an interconnected and systematic way setting out the nature of communities, small- scale self contained communities, the enlargement of these communities to form ethnic nations and the relationship between these and the institutions of the modernising nation state. It also seeks however to deal with what I call "The second project of ethnicity" which is migration and finally goes on to look at the complex problems of multi-nationality and multiculturalism in modern nation states

Asylum, Refuge and Public Policy: Current Trends and Future Dilemmas

Liza Schuster and John Solomos
Sociological Research Online 6 (1) schuster

Keywords: Asylum Policy; Discrimination; Human Rights; Refugee Law
Abstract: Britain is a signatory of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. It is only in the last decade, however, with the passage of the 1993 Asylum and Immigration Appeal Act and the 1998 Human Rights Act, that these two Conventions have became part of British law. This paper begins by exploring the impact of the incorporation of the 1951 Convention and then moves on to look at the hopes that are now pinned on the Human Rights Act. It concludes by considering the (actual and potential) impact of these two Conventions on asylum policy and practice since their incorporation into British law and explores the possible conflict between the Conventions and recent British legislation on asylum. In doing so it highlights the need to develop a deeper and contextualised understanding of current preoccupations with the issue of asylum and refuge in Britain and other European societies.

Confronting 'Uncivil Society' and the 'Dark Side of Globalization': are Sociological Concepts up to the Task?

Chris Rumford
Sociological Research Online 6 (3) rumford

Keywords: Civil Society; Dark Side Of Globalization; Globalization; International Terrorism; Uncivil Society
Abstract: International terrorism is frequently categorized as one element of 'uncivil society' or as the 'dark side of globalization.' The paper examines these concepts, finding them unhelpful in understanding the context for the September 11 attacks in the US. Their weakness derives in large part from the uncritical usage of the terms 'civil society' and 'globalization' characteristic of much contemporary sociological work. In consequence, sociology is in danger of being marginalized from public debate about the most important issues of our day.

Who Suceeds and Who Flounders? Young People in East Europe's New Market Economies

Kenneth Roberts, G I Osadchaya, H V Dsuzev, V G Gorodyanenko and Jochen Tholen
Sociological Research Online 7 (4) roberts

Keywords: East-Central Europe; Education; Labour Markets; Youth
Abstract: The main question addressed in this paper is what happens when the usual sociological predictors (family background and educational attainment, for example) fail to predict labour market success and failure The paper presents evidence from surveys conducted in 1999 among 1300 25-26 year olds in Moscow, Vladikavkaz and Dneipropetrovsk which shows that this was indeed the situation in these places, and probably in most other parts of the former Soviet Union also. Our analysis also draws on evidence from focus groups conducted in Moscow and Dneipropetrovsk during 2002 with a total of 25 recent university graduates. All these young people were 'succeeding' according to the definition of success adopted in our analysis. It is argued that in the new market economies young people's prospects really have become unpredictable: that there are no efficacious but so far overlooked social or psychological variables. Young people's ways of coping with their chaotic conditions are identified: 'keeping faith' with customary reliabilities, off-setting risks, and endeavouring to de-couple their personal prospects from macro-realities. The paper concludes by evaluating competing explanations of the new unpredictability. It is argued that specifically post-Soviet economic trends and conditions in the 1990s are wholly responsible, and that, irrespective of whether the economies recover or remain depressed, the unpredictability of success will most likely be a short-term phenomenon.

Survival Ethnic Entrepreneuers in Greece: a Mosaic of Informal and Formal Business Activities

Gabriella Lazaridis and Maria Koumandraki
Sociological Research Online 8 (2) lazaridis

Keywords: Enterpreneurhip; Greece; Informal Economy; Migrants; Self-employment; Southern Europe
Abstract: This paper explores the phenomenon of ethnic entrepreneurship in Greece. Greece has been transformed from an emigration to an immigration country. Since the 1990s the majority of migrant workers occupy low paid, unskilled jobs in the informal economy. However, some set up (in) formal businesses. Ethnic entrepreneurs of our study have been excluded from social and economic opportunities. By running a business they struggle against exclusion, have control over their work situation (work hours, income) and gain emotional satisfaction and self-fulfilment. As we will show, self-employment is viewed as an 'alternative income-generating activity, a strategy towards inclusion, a feasible 'survival strategy' for escaping discrimination and exclusion given the lack of other employment options. In this context, entrepreneurship is not viewed as an economic behaviour structured by the existing economic and socio-political structures only, but also, as having an important subjective meaning for the self-employed migrant. We will demonstrate that ethnic businesses comprise a mosaic of formal and informal activities. Opportunities for participation of migrants in informal activities occur because of the high demand for informal provision of services and goods at competitive prices. The entrance barriers are lower than in the informal sector since one usually does not have to meet costs associated with running of a business. Although the development of ethnic business activities will be viewed as the outcome of interaction on one's legal status, economic resources, access to informal networks of support, individual aspirations and structures of opportunity (e.g. informal economy) available to migrants in the Greek case migrants are faced with structural disadvantages that push them into what is marginal self-employment. It is the peculiarities of the Greek case (large informal economy and high rates of self-employment and the multiple forms of exclusion they experience as they were in Greece) that encourage them to become ' survival' entrepreneurs, to strive to create a business of their own in the 'twilight zone' of the Greek economy where they often carry out extra-legal activities in order to 'survive'.

Globalisation and the Future of Ageing: Developing a Critical Gerontology

Chris Phillipson
Sociological Research Online 8 (4) phillipson

Keywords: Critical Gerontology; Globalisation; International Governmental Organisations; Risk Society
Abstract: Debates on globalisation have become an important area within the social sciences. The purpose of this chapter is to extend this discussion to the study of ageing and in particular the field of critical gerontology. Some of the concerns here include issues around inequality and social divisions running through the life course. These are being changed and influenced in new ways by the political and economic changes associated with globalisation. The argument of the paper is that globalisation brings forth a new set of actors and institutions influencing the social construction of public policy for old age. Some of the themes covered in this paper include the rise of transnational bodies such as the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation, problems affecting people in the developing world, the acceleration of global migration in various forms, and changes in the nature of citizenship and citizen-rights. The chapter concludes by setting out the case for an 'age-sensitive' globalisation that can provide an effective challenge to new forms of inequality and exclusion.

Global Visions and Globalizing Corporations: an Analysis of Images and Texts from Fortune Global 500 Companies

Peter Robbins
Sociological Research Online 9 (2) robbins

Keywords: Capitalism; Globalization; Image; Narrative; Semiotics; Transnational Corporation
Abstract: Transnational corporations (TNCs) have a central role to play in globalization. At the same time, globalization carries risks for the corporation, and not all of those associated with TNCs may support globalization. While much of the globalization literature suggests that corporations are globalizing their production systems, or contributing to a global culture, there is little exploration of how globalization is framed and mediated within the corporate community itself. This article employs a semiotic analysis of images and texts from annual reports of Fortune Global 500 corporations. It argues that globalizing TNCs generate several narratives geared to persuading employees, shareholders, business partners and members of the financial community of the merits of globalization. They can be divided into at least three types geared to brand, industry leadership or organization. The narratives all have common themes to the extent that they are rooted in a customer focus, but they also demonstrate multiple and sometimes ambiguous global aspirations and expectations.

Social Life Under the Microscope?

Monika Büscher
Sociological Research Online 10 (1) buscher

Keywords: Video Analysis, Time, Socio-Technical Change, Practical Creativity, Imagination,
Abstract: Video is an important new instrument for sociological research, sometimes welcomed as the 'microscope' of social science. It provides access to important and otherwise difficult to examine aspects of human interaction. Moreover, because video captures practice in its lived production as 'another next first time' (Garfinkel 1992), it makes it possible to study practical creativity - the way in which people invent new practices. In this paper I probe the microscope metaphor through concrete examples from my work with landscape architects and computer scientists in participatory technology research and design projects.

Sociology, Science and Sustainability: Developing Relationships in Scotland

Kirsty L. Blackstock, Elizabeth A. Kirk and Alison D. Reeves
Sociological Research Online 10 (2) blackstock

Keywords: Sociological Imagination, Water Framework Directive, Sustainability Science, Consumer-Citizens
Abstract: This paper considers the application of the sociological imagination during the analysis of data collected during an ethnographic study of an environmental regulator, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). SEPA is tasked with implementing the European Water Framework Directive (WFD) in Scotland, which will radically alter the regulation of water use. Applying a sociological imagination allowed the researcher to advocate for a more interdisciplinary and equitable understanding of sustainable water use when feeding back initial research results at the end of the data collection period. The researchers introduced socialised definitions of the environment, which linked social justice and ecological concerns. These insights provided a challenge to the traditional bio-physical science focus of the organisational participants, for whom sustainability is a relatively new addition to their duties. The paper concludes by discussing the importance of developing these interdisciplinary relationships in the future.

Are We All Europeans Now? Local, National and Supranational Identities of Young Adults

Sue Grundy and Lynn Jamieson
Sociological Research Online 10 (3) grundy

Keywords: Europe, European, nation, citizen, identity, young adult
Abstract: The continued expansion and deepening of the European Union state raises important questions about whether there will be a corresponding development of pro-supranational feeling towards Europe. This paper is based on data drawn from a European Commission (EC) funded project on the 'Orientations of Young Men and Women to Citizenship and European Identity'. The project includes comparative surveys of 'representative samples' of young men and women aged 18-24 and samples of this age group on educational routes that potentially orient them to Europe beyond their national boundaries. This comparison of samples is made in paired sites with contrasting cultural and socio-political histories in terms of European affiliations and support for the European Union. The sites are: Vienna and Vorarlberg in Austria; Chemnitz and Bielefeld in East and West Germany; Madrid and Bilbao in Spain; Prague and Bratislava, the capitals of the Czech and Slovak Republics; Manchester, England and Edinburgh, Scotland in the UK. This paper examines patterns of local, national and supranational identity in the British samples in comparison to the other European sites. The typical respondent from Edinburgh and Manchester have very different orientations to their nation-state but they share a lack of European identity and disinterest in European issues that was matched only by residents of Bilbao. International comparision further demonstrates that a general correlation between levels of identification with nation-state and Europe masks a range of orientations to nation, state and Europe nurtured by a variety of geo-political contexts.

Ethnicity, Class and the Earning Inequality in Israel, 1983-1995

Nabil Khattab
Sociological Research Online 10 (3) khattab

Keywords: Class, Discrimination, Earning Inequality, Ethnicity, Israel, Palestinians
Abstract: This paper focuses on the role of ethnicity and class in generating earnings inequality in Israel. Unlike previous studies on inequality of opportunities in Israel, in this paper I compare the earnings of five ethnic groups: European Jews (Ashkenazi), Asian-African Jews (Sephardi), Muslim Palestinians, Christian Palestinians and Druze Palestinians. In addition, both men and women are taken into account. The analysis, which is based on data obtained from the 1983 and 1995 Israeli population censuses, has revealed that in Israel, class variations resulting from the differentiation of employment contracts in the labour market, appear to have played a much more important role over time in producing earnings inequality. However, at the same time, it was found that class in this context is highly related to ethnicity, thereby suggesting that class and ethnicity are interwoven. While it seemed that to some extent, class plays a similar role among men and women, the role of ethnicity among men was much more central than it was among women, in the allocation of people into class positions.

A Child of Its Time: Hybridic Perspectives on Othering in Sociology

Liz Stanley
Sociological Research Online 10 (3) stanley

Keywords: UK Sociology, Hybridic Sociologies; Sociological Imagination.
Abstract: Responding to John Scott's (2005) 'Sociology and its others', the idea of hybridic sociologies is developed, Mills' ideas about 'the sociological imagination' are discussed, Scott's proposal for a core curriculum countered with some suggestions for extended in-depth disciplinary debate about an intellectually expansionist programme for UK sociology, and responses to these suggestions as well as to the broad argument are welcomed.

Mixed Communities Require Mixed Theories: Using Mills to Broaden Goffman's Exploration of Identity Within the GBLT Communities

Dann Hoxsey
Sociological Research Online 13 (1) 10

Keywords: Mills, Goffman, Gay, Queer, Mixed-Methods, Methodology, Reflexivity, Sociological Imagination, Symbolic Interactionism, Class
Abstract: The central objective of this paper is to attempt to counter an overly-rigid theoretical approach in data analysis. Implicit in the push to identify and follow one proper theoretical stream is the idea that one's particular theoretical approach will always be plausible and contains an inherent 'value' over any other approach. That being said, the purpose of this paper is two-fold. The first is to argue that a rigid theoretical approach to understanding people from non-homogenized communities leaves the analysis wanting. Instead, I refer to a more flexible nature of using a mixed-method approach to analysis, which will generate an appropriately pluralistic representation of someone from a pluralist community. Secondly, this paper suggests that a mixed-method approach should include both a micro and a macro analysis. In this vein, I put forward the benefits of combining the theoretical approaches of both Goffman and Mills. In doing so, I am not suggesting that Goffman and Mills are the only theorists to use. Rather, the combination of these two theories is useful for understanding an intersubjective approach to myself. A flexible epistemological approach would recognize that other situations might call for the use of other theorists.

The Notion of the Gift in the Donation of Body Tissues

Rhonda Shaw
Sociological Research Online 13 (6) 4

Keywords: Tissue Donation, Body Gifting, Gift, Altruism, Feeling Rules, Ritual Offerings
Abstract: Recent social science commentary on the donation of body tissues and organs typically invokes Richard Titmuss's work on altruism and the gift relationship as a way of framing donative processes. Much of this discussion, however, has neglected to consider how altruism and body gifting is structured and promoted by organisations and institutions that make such processes possible. In this article I suggest that the accounts people give of their body gifting practices do not always fit orthodox notions of tissue donation as unconditional. Rather, people's perceptions of body gifting and donation depend very much on the kind of tissue being donated and who the tissue is being donated to. Given these complexities, we need more thoroughgoing discussion of the rituals associated with specific donation practices.

Young People and Political Participation: An Analysis of European Union Policies

Rachel Brooks
Sociological Research Online 14 (1) 7

Keywords: Political Participation, Young People, European Union, Gender
Abstract: There is now widespread recognition that, far from being politically apathetic, young people across Europe are engaged in a wide range of 'political' activities. While turnout at national and European elections among the 18-25 age group may be low, researchers have highlighted diverse and creative new forms of political participation. In relation to young women, in particular, Harris (2005) has presented a compelling analysis of the new 'borderspaces' opened up between public and private domains by young women through the use of new technologies. She contends that in the face of greater surveillance and regulation brought about by the shift to neo-liberal forms of governmentality, carving out a protected space for oneself is a political act, in itself. Moreover, the creative ways in which young women across the world use such spaces – to question dominant narratives about the nature of contemporary girlhood, to resist discourses which construct young women as merely passive consumers, and to trouble conventional notions of 'youth participation' – are highly political. Some EU representatives have indicated an awareness of these new forms of engagement and professed a desire to develop links between them and more traditional forms of party politics and policy making (Hoskins, 2005). Nevertheless, the degree to which these sentiments have been translated into policy remains unclear. This article draws on recent documents on young people, citizenship and political participation to assess the extent to which these new spaces of young women's politics are, firstly, recognised and, secondly, valued within EU policy.

Celebrity Gossip and the New Melodramatic Imagination

David Beer and Ruth Penfold-Mounce
Sociological Research Online 14 (2) 2

Keywords: Celebrity, Celebrity Gossip, Respectability, Miley Cyrus, Grammar of Conduct, Melodramatic Imagination
Abstract: This article uses a range of media sources to 'follow' or 'trace' the well-known celebrity Miley Cyrus. Through the development of the concept of a new melodramatic imagination the case study develops the methodological potentials of the types of online archives that now exist. In this instance the authors exercise their own melodramatic imaginations to draw out substantive issues relevant to the case of Miley Cyrus. The article therefore has two aims, the first is the exploration of a particular approach toward understanding transformations in popular culture, and the second is to draw out the types of 'grammar of conduct' that face those who assemble the information about celebrities into consumable narratives. The piece considers how people, in what has been called the Web 2.0 context, assemble melodramatic narratives amongst celebrity gossip that might then shape everyday experiences, understandings and practices.

Narrative Foundations of Knowing: Towards a New Perspective in the Sociology of Knowledge

Anna Borisenkova
Sociological Research Online 14 (5) 17

Keywords: Sociology of Knowledge, Scientific Knowledge, Language, Narrative, Ricoeur, Sociological Explanation, Causal Imputation, Explanation of Large-Scale Phenomena
Abstract: The article deals with the problem that for a long time has been unnoticed in sociology. Knowledge is one of the primary research objects in social science. However, the existing theories, aimed at the exploration of knowledge, provide certain limitations. Sociological models are intended to explain the social aspects. But they fail to answer a fundamental question: 'What is knowledge?' The article introduces a broad analytical scheme for the sociology of knowledge that is narrative in its foundations. This approach focuses on such inner characteristics of knowledge as meaning, coherence, causality, and discourse. Two aspects of narrative construction of sociological knowledge are considered. The first is making a narrative history of science. The second is the embededness of narrative in the process of sociological explanation. The article then discusses the problem of applicability of narrative to the scientific description of large-scale matters such as macro-history and social change. It provides both criticisms and arguments in favour of narrative research of major issues. It concludes that narrative as an analytical scheme has a universal dimension and that it has to be further developed in the framework of a sociological investigation.

Battles over Biofuels in Europe: NGOs and the Politics of Markets

Sarah Pilgrim and Mark Harvey
Sociological Research Online 15 (3) 4

Keywords: NGO, Biofuels, Europe, Policy, Markets, Transport
Abstract: In this paper, we argue that a consortium of NGOs has played a significant role in shaping the market for, and restricting the use of, biofuels as an alternative to conventional fuels for road transport in Europe. This paper considers why a number of NGOs (Greenpeace, Oxfam, WWF, RSPB, Friends of the Earth) have chosen to enter the biofuels debate, and how they have variously developed policy, agreed a political campaign, and exercised political influence, in a key area of the world's response to major global climate change: how to reduce the carbon footprint of transport. We found that in many cases the development of NGO policy has been driven more by narrow political opportunities for influence than by broader and more coherent policy responses to global climate change or economic development, or indeed rigorous assessment of the scientific evidence. The research provides evidence of how NGO policies and lobbying significantly affected biofuel policy changes, review processes, target reductions, and sustainability regulation in the UK and in Europe. We consider that politically instituted markets, such as the one for biofuels, are examples of the emergence of new forms of governance of capitalist political economies facing a novel and pressing combination of drivers (climate change, energy security, resource constraints, and sustainable land-use). Politically instituted markets open up possibilities for political intervention from non-governmental or party-political actors, in ways that other markets do not. If political shaping of markets by NGOs becomes more widespread, issues of democratic legitimacy and public scrutiny will become ever more pressing. The paper is based on in-depth interviews with senior scientific directors and policy-makers in five NGOs, and of senior officials in UK government departments and the European Commission (DG Environment and DG Transport and Energy). It forms part of a wider ESRC research project in Brazil, the USA and Europe on the Transition to Sustainable Bioeconomies.

HIV-Related Stigma Among African Immigrants Living with HIV/AIDS in USA

Emmanuel F. Koku
Sociological Research Online 15 (3) 5

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, Stigma; Africa; Immigrants; Inequality; Discrimination; Immigration
Abstract: Recent advances in the fight against HIV have increased the life expectancy of those infected. Despite these, a number of barriers such as stigma continue to affect HIV prevention and treatment. Although the body of work on HIV stigma is growing, there is a paucity of literature on the experiences of specific sub-groups such as African immigrants living with HIV. Drawing on in-depth interviews with a sample of these immigrants in the US, this study examines their experiences of HIV-related stigma, its impact on their lives, and the means of coping and resistance they adopted. Like other persons living with HIV, study participants experienced interpersonal, internalized and institutional stigma. However, their experiences of, and responses to stigmatization are shaped largely by cultural/religious assumptions and perceptions about HIV learnt from their countries of origin and western media's construction of HIV. The study concludes with broader implications for further conceptualization of stigma.

Mapping the Social Organization of Labour in Moscow: Beyond the Formal/informal Labour Dualism

Colin C. Williams, Sara Nadin, Peter Rodgers, John Round and Jan Windebank
Sociological Research Online 16 (1) 13

Keywords: Informal Sector; Labour Practices; Livelihoods; Household Work Practices; Economic Sociology; Uneven Development; Eastern Europe; Russia; Moscow
Abstract: The starting point of this paper is recognition that the depiction of a formal/informal labour dualism, which views formal and informal labour as separate and hostile realms, is inappropriate for capturing the range of labour practices in societies. This is because labour practices cannot be neatly separated into discrete formal and informal realms, the differences within the formal and informal spheres are as great as the differences between the two realms, and formal and informal labour are not always embedded in different economic relations, values and motives. Here, an alternative more nuanced conceptual lens is proposed that resolves these problems and in so doing captures the multifarious labour practices in societies, namely the total social organization of labour (TSOL) perspective. This depicts labour practices as existing along a spectrum from more formal-oriented to more informal-oriented practices and cross-cuts this with a further spectrum from non-monetized, through in-kind and reciprocal labour, to monetized labour. Applying this conceptual lens, the results of a survey of the anatomy of labour practices in an affluent, mixed and deprived district of Moscow, comprising 313 face-to-face interviews, are then analysed. This reveals that socio-spatial variations in the organisation of labour are not solely about the degree of formalization of working life. Instead, this study unravels that populations range from relatively affluent 'work busy' populations undertaking, and voluntarily selecting from, a multiplicity of labour practices, to relatively disadvantaged 'work deprived' populations engaged in a narrower range of practices and more commonly out of necessity and in the absence of alternatives. The outcome is call for both the wider application and refinement of this TSOL approach when mapping the social organisation of labour and evaluations of whether the findings from Moscow are more widely valid in other societal contexts.

On Friendship, Equality and Introductions: Comparing English and German Regimes of Manners and Emotions

Cas Wouters
Sociological Research Online 16 (1) 2

Keywords: Historical and International Comparison of Germany and England: Friendship, Equality, Introductions, Privacy, Good Society, Social Mobility, Informalization, and Regimes of Manners and Emotions
Abstract: This paper explores friendship by analysing some of the characteristic differences in manners between the Germans and the English, from the end of the nineteenth century until the 1970s. During that time rules for introductions were a major if not the most prominent topic in English manners books, whereas these rules attracted hardly any attention in the German ones. In an opposite way, the same goes for friendship: the topic was almost absent in English manners books while it was a central theme in German ones, together with topics such as duzen – addressing each other with the informal you: Du. Establishing a 'friendship' as well as 'being properly introduced' are both ritual transitions from a rather distant and hierarchical relationship in the direction of greater 'equality' and intimacy. These different forms are explained by placing them in the context of their national class structures and by connecting them to differences in the processes of social emancipation and national integration.

Social Relationships and Trust in Asylum Seeking Families in Sweden

Ulla Björnberg
Sociological Research Online 16 (1) 5

Keywords: Trust, Resilience, Social Capital, Transnational Families, Friendship, Asylum Seeking Families, Asylum Seeking Children
Abstract: Research has suggested that social networks are important resources for children as well as for adults to resist health problems. For asylum seeking children social networking might be hard to accomplish due to constraints linked to social and legal contexts in the host country. Constraints can also be linked to the family situation and the circumstances they have to cope with in every day life. The situation of parents, in particular mothers, are important for the coping of children. In the paper I draw on results from an ongoing study on the experiences of asylum seeking children and their families in Sweden. The over arching research objective is to identify factors that are important for well being of children seeking asylum and to study how they cope with their experiences as asylum seekers. The tension between excluding experiences and expectations regarding how the situation of the child and it's family should improve or deteriorate after the flight is for a child a constitutive reference for how coping strategies are developed. In the analysis I draw on theoretical concepts of resilience, social capital, trust and social recognition. This paper draws on results from an interdisciplinary research project Asylum-seeking children's welfare, health and well-being. Gothenburg Research on Asylum seeking Children in Europe (GRACE), Goteborg University and Nordic School of Public Health, Gothenburg. The study was financed by the European Refugee Fund. The empirical data are based on qualitative interviews with parents and children who have waited for decisions regarding permanent residence for several months and sometimes more than a year.

Fees, Funding and Overseas Study: Mobile UK Students and Educational Inequalities

Rachel Brooks and Johanna Waters
Sociological Research Online 16 (2) 1

Keywords: Higher Education, Students, Tuition Fees, International Education, Cultural Capital
Abstract: An article in The Guardian in 2006 claimed that: 'some bright students have found an answer to the fees nightmare: in Europe'. It went on to argue that the introduction of variable fees in the UK in 2006 had encouraged some UK students to consider moving overseas for their degrees and, in particular, to European countries such as Sweden and the Netherlands, which charged low fees or no fees at all. While there have been a small number of further press reports which have indicated that changes to the funding of higher education in the UK have encouraged more young people to consider seriously the possibility of studying abroad, we still know relatively little about the impact of financial factors on a decision to pursue a degree overseas. Although many researchers have explored the economic rewards which often accrue in the medium- or long-term as a result of overseas study, the academic literature has much less to say about both the impact of fee differentials on young people's decision-making, and the resources upon which they draw to fund a period of study overseas. In an attempt to redress this gap, this paper draws on data from a qualitative study of young UK citizens who had either completed a degree abroad, or were seriously considering moving overseas for this purpose, to explore the impact of short-term economic calculations on their decisions, and the sources of funding upon which they drew. In doing so, we argue, firstly, that there are important differences between mobile students: those who moved abroad for an undergraduate degree tended to be from more privileged backgrounds than those who moved for postgraduate studies and, as a result, considerably less sensitive to price differentials. Secondly, we suggest that, despite important differences in economic capital, both undergraduates and postgraduates were able to draw on significant cultural resources. This raises questions about the extent to which overseas opportunities can be opened up more widely, to include a greater cross-section of young people.

Forty Four Years of Debate: The Impact of Race, Community and Conflict

Robert Moore
Sociological Research Online 16 (3) 12

Keywords: Sociology, Urban, Immigration, Housing, Housing Classes, Community, Sparkbrook, Birming¬ham, Race Relations, Discrimination
Abstract: Race, Community and Conflict by John Rex and Robert Moore was published in 1967 and had a considerable public impact through press and TV. Forty four years later it is still widely cited in research on British urban society and 'race relations'. It is used in teaching research methods, theory, urban sociology and 'race relations' to undergrad-uates. This article describes and explains the immediate impact of the book and its more lasting contribution to sociology. Race, Community and Conflict immediately addressed contemporary public issues around immigration and race relations and was the first book systematically to explore the responses of one city administration to the arrival of new migrants drawn in by the local demand for labour. The longer term impact of the book, it is argued, derives from its attempt to create a theoretical framework deriving from both the work of the Chicago School of Sociology and the adoption of a Weberian approach to social class and urban conflict. The combination of theorised structural analysis with detailed local ethnographic approaches to research probably accounts for the book's continued contribution to the teaching of sociology.

Developments in British Sociology as Shown in British Sociology Journals

Charles Crothers
Sociological Research Online 16 (3) 13

Keywords: Authorship Patterns, Bibliographical Databases, British Sociology, Fields Within Sociology, International Sociology, Journal Articles, Regional Differences
Abstract: To provide a factual foundation for understanding of the trajectory of the development in British sociology a content analysis of the journal articles in the main generalist British sociology journals is provided. This contributes both an overall picture, and allows an account of contrasts between the journals. Attention is focused on the extent to which the content differs between British and other authors (and more detailed geographical breakdowns and other aspects of authorship) and how content has changed over time. Finally, how the research outcomes are related to some of the characteristics of producers and producing departments are assayed.

Lost in Transnationalism: Unraveling the Conceptualisation of Families and Personal Life Through a Transnational Gaze

Sue Heath, Derek McGhee and Paulina Trevena
Sociological Research Online 16 (4) 12

Keywords: Transnationalism, Polish Migration, Family Practices, Family Display, Connectedness
Abstract: This paper compares and contrasts some of the conceptual language used to engage with the realm of family and personal life within the parallel fields of transnational family studies (TFS) and British family studies (BFS). Key concepts which are now widely referenced within BFS - such as 'family practices', 'family display', 'families of choice' and 'connectedness' - have not been widely drawn upon within TFS. Instead, TFS scholars are developing alternative concepts such as 'ways of being' versus 'ways of belonging' and 'frontiering and relativising', often to capture very similar ideas to those current within BFS. This paper critically explores some of the concepts currently being used within transnational family studies, highlighting points of similarity and difference with the BFS tradition, and considers what these parallel literatures might learn from each other. The paper is illustrated by examples drawn from ESRC-funded research on the experiences of post-accession Polish migrants living in the UK.

Looking for Africville - Complementary Visual Constructions of a Contended Space

Stephen Spencer
Sociological Research Online 17 (1) 6

Keywords: Visual Methods, the Sociological Imagination, Dialectical Images, Environmental Racism, Traumascapes, Narrative Mediation, Walking Ethnography, Popular Representation, Discursive Structures
Abstract: This paper explores the historical sources, personal narratives and representations of Africville, an area beside the Bedford Basin near Halifax in Nova Scotia which has been the site of a struggle for social justice and reparation since it was destroyed by the city of Halifax authorities over 40 years ago. The article examines the complex construction of the place as a source of identity and protest, the persistence of the community in memories and stories retrieved in walking the site with a former resident. Through careful consideration of video and still images, artworks and archive maps, the study traces the intersection of different discourses and shows how visual representations and their interpretation produce a complex understanding of place. Images, it is argued, have a different ontology to writing and produce a gradually unfolding, parallel argument. Africville is considered through a combination of traditional written texts, visual ethnographic sources and popular cultural signs, producing a complementary and intersubjective appreciation of a place and its lines of possibility.

Deconstructing Explanation by Mechanism

Hannu Ruonavaara
Sociological Research Online 17 (2) 7

Keywords: Agent-Image, Analytical Sociology, Causality, Critical Realism, Explanation, Intention, Social Mechanism
Abstract: Critical realism and analytic sociology support what can be called explanation by mechanism (EbM). EbM consists of three distinct theses. The elaboration thesis says that mere observation of interdependencies cannot be considered a full explanation because it does not give a description of how the proposed causal connection comes about. The mechanism thesis claims that elaboration must contain an account of the generative/causal mechanism at work. The actionalism thesis cannot be placed within all versions of EbM because it states that an account of a mechanism should describe (1) the situation of the agents and (2) the actions the agents undertake on the basis of their situation. The paper argues that both the elaboration thesis and the actionalism thesis are of crucial importance. However, elaboration should not be equated only with an account of mechanism(s) because a 'theory' of the agent (agent-image) and an account of the relevant context(s) are needed.

Young People and the Reproduction of Disadvantage Through Transnational Higher Education in Hong Kong

Johanna Waters and Maggi Leung
Sociological Research Online 17 (3) 6

Keywords: Transnational Higher Education; Young People; Hong Kong; UK Universities; Internationalisation of Education; Non-Local Degrees
Abstract: This paper examines the role of transnational higher education in reproducing local patterns of disadvantage in Hong Kong. Specifically, it considers the expectations and experiences of local students undertaking British degree programmes, drawing on the findings of a recent qualitative research project. In this paper, we argue that through the introduction of so-called 'top-up' programmes, British universities are providing degree-level education to students unable to access local higher education (HE) in Hong Kong through the 'traditional' route. Drawing upon our interviews with students and graduates, we show the immense cultural and social expectations, placed upon young people in Hong Kong, to obtain a university degree, and the role of 'international' education in (partially) offsetting the shortfall in domestic university places. However, we also suggest that these students/graduates are in various ways relatively disadvantaged by these degrees – they often have less cultural capital and social capital on which to draw, and find that their degrees are less valued than their local equivalent. There are broader implications of our findings for understanding the role of transnational educational provision in localised reproduction of (dis)advantage, especially in East Asia.

'You Are Here': Visual Autobiographies, Cultural-Spatial Positioning, and Resources for Urban Living

Corinne Squire, Cigdem Esin and Chila Burman
Sociological Research Online 18 (3) 1

Keywords: Visual Autobiography, East London, Cultural-Spatial Positioning, Resources, Transnationalism
Abstract: This paper reports on a study of visual autobiographies produced in art workshops conducted in a variety of social contexts in East London with 19 research participants 11 women and girls, 8 men and boys- ranging from 10 to the 50s. From narrative analysis of the images, associated interviews, and field notes on the production and exhibition of the images, the paper argues that the study of cultural activity can allow us to identify cultural-spatial positionings related to, but also distinct from, socio-spatial positionings. Those cultural-spatial positionings indicate and in some cases produce cultural and symbolic resources that might not be discernable from other non-visual research data, that may differ importantly from participants’ socioeconomic resources, and that could usefully receive more attention. The study also suggests that transnationalism is strongly tied to people’s narratives of their cultural lives within global cities, is critically articulated, and can be under-recognised when it is rooted in family.

What’s Driving the Public? A Cross-Country Analysis of Political Attitudes, Human Values and Political Articulation

Joakim Kulin and Alexander Seymer
Sociological Research Online 19 (1) 14

Keywords: Political Attitudes, Basic Human Values, Political Articulation, European Social Survey, Comparative Manifesto Project Database
Abstract: This study addresses how political attitudes are shaped across national contexts. It does so by investigating the influence of nation-specific political articulation and framing on the relationship between human values and political attitudes. Based on the literature, two attitude dimensions can be identified. First, the socioeconomic dimension captures the tension between economic equality and equity (rewarding achievements and effort). Second, the sociocultural dimension captures the tension between individual/civil liberties and traditions/conservative norms. Very few comparative studies systematically investigate the influence of a coherent structure of more basic and abstract motivations (values) on political attitudes. We fill this gap by examining the influence of basic human values on the socioeconomic and sociocultural attitude dimensions across national contexts. To investigate the impact of human values and political attitudes, individual-level data from the European Social Survey (ESS) from 2008 are analyzed using multi-group structural equation modeling (MGSEM). Moreover, we also explore political discourse as a key contextual factor at the country level modifying the relationships between values and attitudes. Specifically, we use data from the Comparative Manifesto Project to investigate the moderating influence of political articulation, i.e., the articulation of socioeconomic and sociocultural issues in political party manifestos, on the relationship between values and political attitudes across countries. Results indicate substantial cross-national variation in the link between values and sociopolitical attitudes, and that this variation can be partly explained by the articulation of sociopolitical issues.

Re-Constructing the Map: NBC's Geographic Imagination and the Opening Ceremony for the 2012 London Olympics

Andrew Shears and Emily Fekete
Sociological Research Online 19 (1) 7

Keywords: Television, Media, London Olympics, National Broadcasting Company, Geographic Imagination, Map
Abstract: The 2012 Olympic Games was an event watched on television by billions of viewers worldwide. In the United States, approximately 40 million people viewed a tape-delayed opening ceremony of the games on the NBC network. With such a high viewership, NBC was in a position of power to influence and educate their audience on the various countries across the globe who participated in the Olympic Games and opening ceremony. Drawing on Gregory’s notion of a ‘geographic imagination,’ we suggest NBC editors put their version of the world on display to the American audience, thus influencing the way in which American viewers may understand the world. In this paper, we have constructed a map to provide a visual representation of NBC’s geographic imagination. We find this map, based on total screen time the countries received during the ‘Parade of Nations’ segment of the opening ceremony, to suggest a unique geographic imagination worthy of further study because of its potential wide influence.

Trust, Access and Sensitive Boundaries Between '€Public' and '€Private': A Returning Insider's Experience of Research in Bulgaria

Milena I. Kremakova
Sociological Research Online 19 (4) 12

Keywords: Bulgaria, Eastern Europe, Ethnography, Maritime Labour, Post-Socialist, Research Ethics, ‘returning Insider’
Abstract: The article argues that social researchers need a critical, locally situated and historically informed understanding of the categories of ‘public’ and ‘private’, in particular when carrying out research in post-socialist Eastern Europe. Drawing on an ethnographic study of the working lives of Bulgarian maritime workers, the article discusses a range of ethical fieldwork dilemmas encountered while negotiating field access, maintaining relations with gatekeepers, recruiting participants, establishing rapport, interviewing, gaining access to documentary evidence and exiting the field. The analysis focuses on the conceptual and practical boundaries between the ‘public’ and the ‘private’ and highlights the entanglement of the public and private spheres. The notion of ‘returning insider’ is developed and the implications of the returning insider’s positionality are discussed in Bulgarian post-socialist context.

The EU’s Racial Equality Directive and the Evolution of Discourse in the Field of the Fight Against Discrimination. a Comparison Between France, the UK and Spain

Philippe Hamman and Cécile Frank
Sociological Research Online 20 (2) 1

Keywords: Discrimination, Racial Equality Directive, Language, Equal Opportunity, Racism, Europe
Abstract: This paper assesses the extent of the convergence of public policies purporting to combat racial discriminations in Europe by focusing on the cases of France, the UK and Spain. It shows that the influence of ‘national models’ remains powerful even when the implementation of a common policy instrument such as a European directive is at stake – in this instance the Racial Equality Directive of 29 June, 2000. Having outlined the reasons for focusing on this directive, we propose a synthesis of sociological and political science studies on the subject and present our comparative methodological approach in detail. We focus on the language employed to present the discrimination problem in all three countries under study. We first examine the French case and retrace the progressive evolution of the rhetoric used, from an emphasis on the fight against racism to equal opportunities and the promotion of diversity. Having thus observed the medium-term impact of national socio-political dynamics on a European frame of reference for action, we introduce a comparison with Spain and the UK, relying on documents produced by European institutions.

Enduring or Crossing Distance for Love? Negotiating Love and Distance in the Lives of Mixed Transnational Couples

Rebecca Chiyoko King-O'Riain
Sociological Research Online 21 (1) 12

Keywords: Transnationalism, Emotion, Distance, Love, Globalization
Abstract: Within the field of transnationalism and globalization, studies have tended to focus on the flow of people, ideas and goods (Giddens 2003, Beck 2011, Fitzgerald 2008). Within the field of migration this has meant importantly an increasing focus on studies of gender, migration and emotion (Brooks and Simpson 2013; Svasek and Skrbis 2007, Baldassar 2008). However, these studies tend to focus on the context of migration and how that shapes decisions around migration and belonging without focusing on the effect of migration on emotions themselves. Through ethnographic narrative interviews with 36 mixed transnational couples, this article analyses how the emotion of love is understood and practiced within some ‘global families’ (Beck and Beck-Gernsheim 2014). The article finds that for the mixed intercultural couples interviewed here, distance played a role in defining and confirming love (love at a distance) and was often seen as a reason to migrate or move (crossing distance for love) as a test or proof that love was real. These different cultural meanings of love show how distance could increasingly play a role in how we define and practice love today.

Combining Egocentric Network Maps and Narratives: An Applied Analysis of Qualitative Network Map Interviews

Alice Altissimo
Sociological Research Online 21 (2) 14

Keywords: Egocentric Network Maps, Map Analysis, Qualitative Network Map Interview, International Students, Qualitative Analysis, Structural Analysis
Abstract: This paper reveals the potential which lies in combining the qualitative analysis of egocentric network maps with the corresponding narratives collected simultaneously during an interview. It presents a method of analysis which has been validated in research on the lifeworlds of international students in order to elucidate their perspective on social support in their everyday lives. It is a method of analysis which can be applied in various other research fields and to answer various research questions when it comes to exploring meanings, feelings, relationships, attractions, and dependencies. The method is interviewee-centred and the approach is holistic, leading to comprehensive insights. Using examples of original research data, this paper first illustrates the data collection and then the data analysis procedure in the following three steps: analysis of the map, analysis of the narrative, and combination of the analyses.

Resisting ‘Austerity Gentrification’ and Displacement in Southern Europe

Sandra Annunziata and Loretta Lees
Sociological Research Online 21 (3) 5

Keywords: Gentrification, Eviction, Displacement, Resistance, Southern Europe
Abstract: This paper discusses 'austerity gentrification', austerity eviction/displacement, and resistance to them in Southern Europe during the current crisis. We focus on three cities, which until recently have barely featured in gentrification studies: Athens, Madrid and Rome. We show that eviction/displacement is being framed as a collective problem by anti-eviction/gentrification movements in Southern Europe but that more inter-class solidarity will be needed in the future. Northern European cities would do well to look at the resistance practices operating in Southern European cities.

Transnational Social Mobility Strategies and Quality of Work Among Latin-American Women Sex Workers in Spain

Laura Oso
Sociological Research Online 21 (4) 11

Keywords: Sex Work, Prostitution, Gender, Migration, Quality of Work, Latin-American Women, Transnational
Abstract: The aim of this article is to analyse the quality of work of two of the main types of female sex work in Spain (clubs and in-call flats). In order to do so I will focus on the following working dimensions: wages, power relations, skills, alienation, health, violence, work life and stigma. Firstly, the article seeks to highlight the structural factors that condition the quality of work of Latin American female sex workers in Spain. These factors are closely connected to policies regarding migration and sex work, which foment irregular work arrangements (undocumented migrants and informal workers). Secondly, I analyse entry formats (indebted or autonomous migration) and how they impact on working conditions. Thirdly, the article considers the migrant women’s work choices and the resulting living and working conditions they may encounter. I intend to show that Latin American women sex workers in Spain might opt for a certain type of work within the context of strategic decisions, as linked to their migratory and social mobility projects. These decisions have a family and a transnational scope (country of origin, country of destination). The analysis presented is based on qualitative fieldwork (semi-structured interviews) carried out in Galicia (north-west Spain).

Ethnicity and (Dis)advantage: Exchanging Cultural Capital in UK International Education and Graduate Employment

I Lin Sin
Sociological Research Online 21 (4) 3

Keywords: Cultural Capital, Ethnicity, Bourdieu, Malaysia, International Education, Graduate Employment
Abstract: This article investigates the under-researched role of ethnicity in the conversion of cultural capital linked to UK international education into life chance privileges and disadvantages. It reports findings from qualitative interviews with Malaysian international students and graduates who pursued their UK education in the UK and/or in Malaysia. It moves beyond a heavy focus on class in existing literature to delayer further complexities in distinction influenced by ethnicity and made more visible by new modes of international education alongside the traditional mode. I highlight how ethnicity influenced the participants’ higher education choices, and their accumulation and activation of knowledge, skills, dispositions and networks. I show how ethnicity shaped their sense of appropriate graduate work and their perceived value of a UK education in relation to economic opportunities and constraints. The participants tended to study, interact and work most with members of their ethnic group, reflecting Malaysia’s distinctive majority-minority divide across higher education and employment. While linked to ethnicity, relevant participants regarded nationality as a more significant factor for exclusion in the UK labour market. The findings have implications for the development of Bourdieu’s concept of cultural capital, and the advancement of equity and inclusiveness within and beyond international education. I conclude that more recognition is needed of the heterogeneity of the foreign student and graduate middle-class to explore the exchangeability of cultural capital across stratified geographical and socio-relational contexts.

Is Information Power? Comparing Anonymous and Open Egg Donation

Amy Speier
Sociological Research Online 22 (2) 1

Keywords: Egg Donation, In-Vitro Fertilization, Anonymous/open Donation, Pre-Conception Parenting, Disclosure
Abstract: Both the Czech Republic and the United States are destinations for cross-border reproductive travelers. For North Americans, including Canadians, who opt to travel to the Czech Republic for IVF using an egg donor, they are entering a fertility industry that is anonymous. This makes the Czech Republic different from other European countries that necessitate open gamete donation, as in Austria, Germany and the United Kingdom. For reproductive travelers coming to the United States for fertility treatment, there is a wider menu of choices regarding egg donation given the vastly unregulated nature of the industry. More recently, professionals in the industry are pushing for ‘open’ egg donation. For intended parents traveling to either location seeking in vitro fertilization using an egg donor, they must choose whether or not to pursue open or closed donation. As pre-conception parents, they navigate competing discourses of healthy parenting of donor-conceived offspring. They must be reflexive about their choices, and protective when weighing their options, always keeping their future child’s mental, physical and genetic health in mind. Drawing from ethnographic data collected over the course of six years in the United States and the Czech Republic, this paper will explore both programs, paying special attention to the question of how gamete donation and global assisted reproductive technologies intersect with different notions about healthy pre-conception parenting.

Making ‘assisted World Families’? Parenting Projects and Family Practices in the Context of Globalised Gamete Donation

Nicky Hudson
Sociological Research Online 22 (2) 4

Keywords: Assisted Reproduction, Fertility Tourism, Donation, Kinship, Transnational, Disclosure
Abstract: As a culturally pervasive technology, IVF and its related techniques have globalised at a rapid rate, spreading to most regions of the world. As one corollary of this development, cross-border assisted reproduction has emerged as a means by which individuals and couples can travel from their country of origin in order to seek access to fertility treatment services in another country. Little is currently known about a novel range of family forms created via these transnational processes. Whilst analytic comparisons can be made with the global connections found in cases of inter-country adoption, families formed using assisted reproduction can be differentiated on the basis of the complex sociotechnical negotiations required to achieve pregnancy. This paper draws on data from a UK-based study of cross-border assisted reproduction to consider the ways in which parenting projects and new familial subjectivities are achieved within the context of globalised IVF. It uses qualitative interview data from women and men travelling from the UK to a range of countries for fertility treatment and offers a consideration of how thinking with ideas about globalised reproduction can assist us in understanding localised family practices. The paper develops existing theorising about ‘world families’ (Beck and Beck-Gernsheim 2014:2); extending this formulation to reflect the increasingly internationalised nature of ARTs and the attendant complexities of biomedicalised family formation in this context.

Investigating Differences in Brexit-Vote Among Local Authorities in the UK: An Ecological Study on Migration- and Economy-Related Issues

Peter Tammes
Sociological Research Online ()

Keywords: European Union, United Kingdom, Referendum, Brexit, Quantitative Analysis, Ecological Study
Abstract: During a non-binding referendum on the UK’s membership in the EU in June 2016, 51.9% of UK voters voted in favour of leaving the EU, also known as Brexit. However, the Local Authorities in the UK showed a wide variation in the referendum outcome. For 380 Local Authorities, the EU referendum outcome was linked to data derived from the 2011 Census, creating a database to investigate associations between local factors and the referendum outcome. This ecological study formulated and tested hypotheses related to migration and economic issues as those two topics dominated the EU referendum campaign. The results of multivariable generalised linear model analyses showed that the percentage of migrants arrived between 2004-2011 in local areas was positively associated with the proportion of Leave-votes. This indicates that the relative number of recently arrived migrants might have been a key factor in voters’ decision. Further research might focus on the origin of those migrants. Furthermore, in England the percentage of lower educated was positively associated with the proportion of Leave-votes. This indicates that England was divided along educational lines. Moreover, this study also found a positive association between the proportion of elderly with self-reported poorer general health and the proportion of Leave-votes. Although investigating local health outcomes was beyond the study’s aim, this result indicates that health issues might be of importance in understanding local differences in EU referendum outcomes. These findings provide us with a better understanding of the underlying factors of the Brexit-vote and directions for future research.