"Ordinary, the same as anywhere else": notes on the management of spoiled identity in 'marginal' middle class neighbourhoods

ALLEN, C., POWELL, R., CASEY, R. and COWARD, S. (2007). "Ordinary, the same as anywhere else": notes on the management of spoiled identity in 'marginal' middle class neighbourhoods. Sociology, 41 (2), 239-258.


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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1177/0038038507074971


Urban sociologists are becoming increasingly interested in neighbourhood as a source of middle-class identity. Particular emphasis is currently being given to two types of middle-class neighbourhood; gentrified urban neighbourhoods of ‘distinction’ and inconspicuous ‘suburban landscapes of privilege’. However, there has been a dearth of work on ‘marginal’ middle-class neighbourhoods that are similarly ‘inconspicuous’ rather than distinctive, but less exclusive, thus containing sources of ‘spoiled identity’. This article draws on data gathered from two ‘marginal’ middleclass neighbourhoods that contained a particular source of ‘spoiled identity’: social renters. Urban sociological analyses of neighbour responses to these situations highlight a process of dis-identification with the maligned object, which exacerbates neighbour differences. Our analysis of data from the ‘marginal’ middle-class neighbourhoods suggests something entirely different and Goffmanesque. This entailed the management of spoiled identity, which emphasized similarities rather than differences between neighbours.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The final, definitive version of this paper has been published in Sociology, 41 (2), April 2007 by SAGE Publications Ltd, All rights reserved. http://online.sagepub.com. © SAGE Publications Ltd
Uncontrolled Keywords: class, identity, neighbourhoods, ordinariness
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1177/0038038507074971
Page Range: 239-258
Depositing User: Ann Betterton
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2009
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 13:52
URI: https://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/834

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