Class oriented social tools analysis

Technologies and class representation

Fantastic blog essay by the always fascinating danah boyd : Viewing American class divisions through Facebook and MySpace. This post about teenagers cultural classes in United States and their choice in chosing social networking tools. Some samples :

“In sociology, Nalini Kotamraju has argued that constructing arguments around “class” is extremely difficult in the United States. (…). She argues that class divisions in the United States have more to do with lifestyle and social stratification than with income.”

“The (…) “good” kids are now going to Facebook. These kids tend to come from families who emphasize education and going to college. (…) They are primarily white, but not exclusively. They are part of what we’d call hegemonic society. They are in honors classes, looking forward to the prom, and live in a world dictated by after school activities.

“MySpace is still home for(…) immigrant teens, “alternative kids,” (…) These are kids whose parents didn’t go to college, who are expected to get a job when they finish high school. (…) MySpace has most of the kids who are socially ostracized at school because they are geeks, freaks, or queers.”

Best bit :

“In the 70s, Paul Willis analyzed British working class youth and he wrote a book called Learning to Labor: How Working Class Kids Get Working Class Jobs. He argued that working class teens will reject hegemonic values because it’s the only way to continue to be a part of the community that they live in. (…) His analysis has such strong resonance in American society today. “

(C’est moi qui souligne). My feeling is that you can swap American with Western World in the last sentence.

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