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An international comparative study of attitudes towards socio-economic inequality

Barford, Anna (2010) An international comparative study of attitudes towards socio-economic inequality. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

How teachers think about inequality in terms of what they aspire to and how they defend their views is surprisingly similar in the three study countries, Kenya, Mexico and the UK, despite their different positions in the world economic order. I attribute this to the near global hegemony of neoliberal logics concerning what is seen as being desirable and how things work. What differ are the terms in which inequality is defined and the form that critiques of inequality take. In particular, questions of respect and inferiority / superiority are verbalised in the middle and poorer countries and not in the richer country. The most important message to come from this work is that in thinking about inequality at the world level, it is important to talk about inequality with people from different points in the world, rather than concerning ourselves mainly with what the rich think of the poor or what the poor think of the poor. Through better understanding the experiences and constructions of world inequality according to people differentially positioned within this inequality, we can more fruitfully learn about the nature of what these findings, and those of many others, illustrate to be a very damaging situation. These findings suggest that the energy for change is least likely to come from richer countries as the more powerful critiques often stem from people living where they see and experience more challenging aspects of world inequality.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > Geography (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Dr Anna Barford
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2011 11:51
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2013 08:45
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1232

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