ABSTRACT

In the ‘social fi eld of citizenship’, ethnicity, gender, generation, socio-economic status and space interlock in complicated ways. In this chapter I will again draw on Bourdieu, this time his theory of capitals (1979; 1986; 1989a; 1989b), in order to move beyond the categorical limitations of these social positions and consider the interactions that occur between them. For Bourdieu it is ‘capital’ movements through social space that structure the power, and consequently profi t, conferred on the holder, and understanding the ‘social relations of capitals’ helps us to understand how social positions intersect and interact in subjective production. As the previous chapter revealed, the structure of the fi eld of power is highly contextual; what is valued by some social groups, at some times, will not be valued by others (Wacquant 1989). However, in the narratives of informants, there was one process that was desired by almost all. The value placed on ‘integration’ was striking in its consistency, and access to social, cultural, economic and ‘symbolic’ capital was continually expressed in its terms. While it is important to recognise that there is a gap between abstract interpretive categories and on-the-ground discourse, the language of ‘integration’ was nonetheless powerfully produced. In the use of words such as ‘mixing’, ‘hiding’ and ‘passing’, informants referred to, aspired to, and evoked ideas of ‘integration’ and ‘assimilation’ as the solution to social exclusion.