Negotiating Self Under Regimes of 'Othering': How social policy can reconstitute the identities and social practices of key social actors in three community development projects in the north east.

Andie Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

Community development (CD) is a contested professional practice due to the contrasting ways that academics, practitioners, policy makers and ‘service users’ define and utilise it. Arguably, the 2010 Coalition government rejects the principles and practice of CD; especially the role and function of CD practitioners, as it advocates that communities, citizens and volunteers can now, without CD support, utilise localised power and funding to build ‘stronger’, and more independent, communities. This study aims to demonstrate how key policy drivers – such as: The Big Society, voluntarism, localism, public sector cuts / austerity and asset transfers – are reconstituting not only representations and understandings of CD, but also the identities and social practices of CD professionals, volunteers and local people who are working together in three localised CD projects in the north east of England. Indeed, this research will show that competing discourses of CD construct a variety of roles for CD professionals, volunteers and local people/residents, as there is a ‘push’ for them to adopt the roles as specified by the dominant CD discourses. However, some resist and adopt the roles of marginalised discourses or ones that were once dominant. This can result in micro processes of ‘othering’ where socially antagonistic relationships are produced within the CD projects themselves; which can then compromise the achievement of each project’s aims and objectives, and also potentially undermine the hegemonic articulation of the dominant CD discourse in circulation within each project.

Conference

Conference"Resisting the demonisation of 'the Other': State, nationalism and social control in a time of crisis." 42nd Annual Conference of the European Group for the study of Deviance and Social Control
Period1/09/14 → …
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