Posts Tagged ‘Bev Skeggs’

‘Crap town slags’, Gove and ‘Educating Rita’: some (more) thoughts on aspiration and ‘class mobility’

Written by Kim. Posted in Featured, News

At the gym last week, I listened to the latest episode in one of my favourite podcasts, ‘The Slate Culture Gabfest’, a funny, critical and intelligent review of cultural ‘happenings’ from film to literature. In the show, the presenters interviewed fashion commentator Simon Doonan about his new book ‘Asylum’, a collection of essays on the fashion industry’s ‘glamorous madness and stylish insanity’. Leaving aside my issues with this kind of highly selective appropriation and celebration of ‘madness’ and ‘inclusivity’ within the art and fashion world, I was intrigued by Doonan’s account of his literal and social journey from his working-class parents’ home in ‘the boonies’ (the suburbs of Reading) to become part of New York’s fashion elite. In this post, I share some of my reflections on the significance of Doonan’s story and how it led me back to Michael Gove’s class project.

Glossy Topics Matter: Is there value in researching the frivolous?

Written by Heather. Posted in News

funAlthough sociology is by definition a study of society there are key areas that despite being of high public interest are often considered of low scholarly value. These ‘glossy topics’, as Ruth Penfold-Mounce shows in this guest post, have to fight hard to gain recognition as being worthy alongside highbrow theory or policy based research with measurable impact factor. Glossy topics it would seem often need validation from research funding in order to be taken seriously. Significantly studying glossy issues is incredibly popular amongst undergraduates and if we are to provide research-based teaching more support and recognition should go to those grappling with glossiness in a sometimes hostile scholarly environment.

From Ladette to Lady: Kerry Katona vs. Cheryl Cole

Written by Heather. Posted in News

Kerry Katona and Cheryl Cole have similar personal histories, and comparable journeys to fame. Both come from distinctly working-class families in the north of England, both have been in girl bands; in reality shows; and in very well publicised marriages. But their realities now are polls apart. In this guest post, Laura Clancy asks: How, and why, has Cole transgressed her working-class roots to become the ‘nation’s sweetheart’, idolised by girls as the pinnacle of femininity, whilst Katona is mocked for being a ‘chav’- the ultimate working-class insult? Why is fame and success measured by distance from working-class-ness?

‘Aspirational’ youth, the craft of interviewing, and enforced narratives

Written by Kim. Posted in News

Interviewer: Is there anything you would like to be known for [in the future]?

Jason:   Um, no, not right now.

Our first phase of data collection is almost complete, and the team are currently working their way through pages upon pages of transcripts from 24 group interviews with year 10 and 12 pupils from six schools across England. In this post, Kim reflects on some of the emerging findings and the thornier methodological issues arising for us as a team.

A team report from the Gender, Media and Generation(s) Postgraduate Workshop

Written by Kim. Posted in News

On Friday 25th January, the CelebYouth team attended a workshop organised by Tori Cann and Ester McGeeney for postgraduate researchers working in the areas of gender, media and generation. While not strictly postgraduates, we were keen to attend the event and hear presentations of new and emerging work from ‘young’ scholars working in the field, as well as the keynotes from Bev Skeggs and Yvonne Tasker. In this post we give our overall impressions of the day. In separate posts we explore two of the themes that came through for us: social class and femininity and masculinity and race as absent presences. In addition to these, we have written a short post about contempotary spaces for feminist scholarship and collective action – a theme which emerged from discussions at the end of the conference.

Class and femininity: From tween girls to white trash celebrities

Written by Kim. Posted in Featured, News

Two key themes emerged for us from the Gender, Media and Generation conference. In another post we explore how race and masculinity were absent presences throughout the day, and in a final short post reflect on working as feminist scholars in contemporary climate of academia. In this post we explore what speakers had to say about social class and femininity and how this relates to our own research.

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