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This book, the second title in the Rethinking Community Development series, starts from concern about increasing inequality worldwide and the re-emergence of community development in public policy debates.

It argues for the centrality of class analysis and its associated divisions of power to any discussion of the potential benefits of community development. It proposes that, without such an analysis, community development can simply mask the underlying causes of structural inequality. It may even exacerbate divisions between groups competing for dwindling public resources in the context of neoliberal globalisation.

Reflecting on their own contexts, a wide range of contributors from across the global north and south explore how an understanding of social class can offer ways forward in the face of increasing social polarisation. The book considers class as a dynamic and contested concept and examines its application in policies and practices past and present. These include local/global and rural/urban alliances, community organising, ecology, gender and education.

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The Natural History of a Research Project

Drawing on her long experience as an academic researcher and writer, Ann Oakley develops a sociology of the research process itself, telling the story of how a research project is undertaken and what happens during it, to both researchers and those who are researched. This remarkable book focuses on a topic of great importance in the provision of health services – caring and social support.

Setting neglect of this topic in the wider context of an ongoing crisis in gendering knowledge, Social support and motherhood is now reissued for a contemporary audience. It has much resonance for social science researchers and others interested in the experiences of mothers, and in the relations between social research, academic knowledge and public policy.

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Data from the most recent survey are used to explore occupational class (NS-SeC) distributions, and intergenerational absolute and relative mobility flows between seven origins and seven destinations. While acknowledging the challenges in conceptualising and operationalising women’s social class, this evidence suggests broad similarities but clear, specific differences between male and female mobility. Mobility rates continue to be high overall, but with limited access to Class 1 (professionals and managers), in particular for women; limited escape from Class 7 (routine operatives); and a distinctive pattern for Class 4 (self-employed). The gender variations, arising from the gendered labour market, are related to gender differences in occupational transition. Evaluation of trends has to cautious, but no evidence of a reduction in mobility rates is found, and downward mobility seems to be increasing.

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social class and other forms of discrimination and oppression including gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity and disability (Oliver, 1990; Anthias, 2001, Dominelli, 2006; Craig, 2012). As second-wave feminists pointed out, official statistics (largely based upon Weberian notions) have focussed upon women’s social class in relation to their fathers’ and/or husbands’ occupations, reflecting assumptions that ‘husband and wife are always social equals’, self-evidently not always the case (Davis, in Garnsey, 1982, p.426). Women were – and are – subjected to oppression

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