chapter  3
21 Pages

Multiple Inequalities as Sociocultural Boundaries

Combining Intersectional Theory with the Sociology of Social Boundaries
WithAnna Amelina

This chapter aims to introduce the sociocultural-boundaries approach, which integrates perspectives of cultural sociology, intersectionality and social constructivism into one single concept. It suggests that inequalities are created and changed by the social and the cultural. The logic of social constructivism thus implies that the analytical focus should be on the process of inequality production. The process orientation urges us to consider that sets of unequal social relations may shift during the interplay. The chapter describes how important it is to consider process orientation and the socioconstructivist perspective in studies of social inequality. The proposed reading of intersectional theory emphasizes that hierarchical boundaries between stances or social positions are created through the use of intersubjectively shared categorical distinctions. To reiterate, historically specific and intersubjectively shared categorical distinctions and cultural systems of classification are to be understood as a cultural dimension, while social practice, resource allocation, life chances and life conditions are regarded as elements of the social dimension.