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Representing the middle-class ‘hipster’: Emerging modes of distinction, generational oppositions and gentrification
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Child and Youth Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3495-8087
2018 (English)In: European Journal of Cultural Studies, ISSN 1367-5494, E-ISSN 1460-3551Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

This article explores how representations of the ‘hipster’ in newspapers and onblogs are bound up with processes of class distinction in contemporary Britain. Theanalysis demonstrates that the hipster is a contested middle-class social type who isthe object of both denigration and prestige. The hipster is typically represented as ayoung person associated with the middle-class fraction of the cultural intermediarieswho is engaged in a particular set of reflexive and trendy consumption practices,often performed in gentrified urban spaces and linked to the creative industries.The article suggests that the disputed status of ‘hipster cool’ is indicative of shiftingclass distinctions in cultural taste and classificatory struggles within the middleclass between generational groupings that involve questions of authenticity. Suchcontestations are reflected by the increasing legitimacy of emerging forms ofcultural capital rooted in popular culture and embraced by young people, and thewaning symbolic power of traditional highbrow culture associated with an oldergeneration of middle-class people. It is also argued that the classificatory strugglesover hipster tastes and lifestyles have a spatial dimension as bound up with thepublic controversies and social anxieties linked to gentrification in neoliberal Britain.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
Keywords [en]
Authenticity, class, consumption, cultural intermediaries, distinction, emerging cultural capital, generation, gentrification, hipster, social type
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Research subject
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-159767DOI: 10.1177/1367549418772168OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-159767DiVA, id: diva2:1245621
Available from: 2018-09-05 Created: 2018-09-05 Last updated: 2020-02-24

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le Grand, Elias
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  • Other style
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  • de-DE
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Output format
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