Making the middle classes on shifting ground?:Residential status, performativity and middle-class subjectivities in contemporary London

Benson, M. and Jackson, Emma (2017) Making the middle classes on shifting ground?:Residential status, performativity and middle-class subjectivities in contemporary London. British Journal of Sociology, 68 (2). pp. 215-233. ISSN 0007-1315

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Abstract

This paper argues that shifts in access to housing – both in relation to rental and ownership – disrupt middle-class reproduction in ways that fundamentally influence class formation. While property ownership has had a long association with middle-class identities, status and distinction, an increasingly competitive rental market alongside inflated property prices has impacted on expectations and anxieties over housing futures. In this paper, we consider two key questions: (1) What happens to middle-class identities under the conditions of this wider structural change? (2) How do the middle classes variously manoeuvre within this? Drawing on empirical research conducted in London, we demonstrate that becoming an owner-occupier may be fractured along lines of class but also along the axes of age, wealth and timing, particularly as this relates to the housing market. It builds on understandings of residential status and place as central to the formation of class, orienting this around the recognition of both people and place as mutable, emphasizing that changing economic and social processes generate new class positionalities and strategies for class reproduction. We argue that these processes are writ large in practices of belonging and claims to place, with wider repercussions within the urban landscape.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
British Journal of Sociology
Additional Information:
This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Benson, M. and Jackson, E. (2017), Making the middle classes on shifting ground? Residential status, performativity and middle-class subjectivities in contemporary London. The British Journal of Sociology, 68: 215-233. https://doi.org/10.1111/1468-4446.12256 which has been published in final form at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/1468-4446.12256 This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
Uncontrolled Keywords:
/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/3300/3312
Subjects:
ID Code:
155773
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
07 Jun 2021 08:05
Refereed?:
Yes
Published?:
Published
Last Modified:
27 Oct 2021 07:25