News from Aug 22, 2016
Jens Ambrasat, Christian von Scheve, Gesche Schauenburg, Markus Conrad & Tobias Schröder (2016): Unpacking the Habitus: Meaning Making Across Lifestyles, in: Sociological Forum. DOI:10.1111/socf.12293
The concept of habitus refers to socially stratified patterns of perception, classification, and thinking that are supposed to bring about specific lifestyles. Until now, research on the links between stratification and lifestyles has accounted for the habitus mainly in conceptual and theoretical terms, and studies directly measuring habitus and its association with stratification and lifestyles are rare. The present study conceptualizes the habitus as an individual-level pattern of meaning making and suggests an operationalization that is commonly used in identity research. Using survey data of 3,438 respondents, the study investigates associations between different lifestyles and patterns of meaning making. Results show, first, that self-related meanings vary systematically across lifestyle categories and mirror respondents' stratification position. Second, the meanings of various social concepts also vary significantly across lifestyle categories and partly reflect descriptive lifestyle characteristics. In sum, the study presents a plausible operationalization of (parts of) the habitus and advances our understanding of its mediating position between stratification and lifestyles.