The incinerator and the beach: community, activism, and the “Big Society“ in a Sussex town

Harrison, Elizabeth (2011) The incinerator and the beach: community, activism, and the “Big Society“ in a Sussex town. Focaal, 2011 (61). pp. 91-103. ISSN 0920-1297

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Abstract

This article interrogates the complex ways in which “community“ is constructed in a Sussex town. It contributes to long-standing debates in anthropology about the meaning of community, considering the relevance of these to current policy agendas of localism and “Big Society.“ The article opens with an account of apparently strong community resistance to changes induced from outside. Drawing on long-term ethnographic research, it goes on to argue that the ways in which people relate to this community are complex. The extent to which individuals engage in more or less formalized group activity and how this intersects with class, education, and mobility are important aspects of this complexity. The article finds that as some groups become more professionalized, processes of exclusion are consolidated: those who become most able to effect change ironically become distanced from the community they seek to represent.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Activism; Community; Localism; Representation; UK
Schools and Departments: School of Global Studies > Anthropology
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology > GN301 Ethnology. Social and cultural anthropology > GN397 Applied anthropology
Depositing User: Elizabeth Harrison
Date Deposited: 04 Jul 2012 12:54
Last Modified: 04 Jul 2012 12:55
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/39878
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