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Class, Culture, and Conservatism: Reassessing Education as a Variable in Political Sociology

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... Research by Middendorp (1991) points out that this moral type of individualism is especially indicated by a rejection of authoritarianism, a rejection of traditional ideas about family life and sexuality, and a democratic inclination. Middendorp (1991:259-62) also considers Inglehart's well-known index for "postmaterialism" a measure for this type of individualism, and to justice, as other research has demonstrated (Flanagan 1979(Flanagan , 1982(Flanagan , 1987Dekker, Ester, and Van den Broek 1999;Houtman 2001). We therefore measure (moral) individualism in this article as the linear combination of an (inverted) scale for authoritarianism, 9 a scale for sexual permissiveness, 10 and Inglehart's index for postmaterialism. ...
... As to level of education, it is important to note that the moral type of individualism emphasized by the thesis of individualization is not only prominent among the young, but among the well educated as well (e.g., Inglehart 1977Inglehart , 1990Inglehart , 1997Houtman 2001). So, the well educated not only display a relatively strong affinity with New Age, but also a high level of individualism. ...
... The strong positive relationship between individualism and level of education has been common knowledge in the social sciences for at least the last half century. However, some of the most conventional sociological interpretations of this relationship, which to a certain extent contradict one another, appear to be untenable when thoroughly tested (Houtman 2001). On the other hand, we know of no research that demonstrates higher levels of rationalism among the highly educated than among the poorly educated. ...
Article
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Research from the Netherlands has pointed out that the increased popularity of New Age since the 1960s by no means compensates for the dramatic decline of the Christian churches. From a theoretical point of view, however, it is more important to study why those remarkably divergent developments have occurred in the first place. This article does this by analyzing survey data collected among the Dutch population at large in 1998, focusing on a comparison of the young and the elderly. It is concluded, first, that there are no indications that the decline of the Christian tradition has been caused by a process of rationalization. Second, the decline of the Christian tradition and the growth of nonreligiosity as well as New Age are caused by increased levels of moral individualism (individualization). Implications for the sociological analysis of cultural and religious change are discussed.
... Cultural Capital. Through education and cultural participation, individuals develop skills to look at social issues from different points of view, including the ability to recognize and understand different cultural expressions (Houtman 2000). Hence, immigration attitudes can be related to parental or individual's education, cultural participation, as well as other forms of cultural capital. ...
... Numerous studies indicate that low education associates with ethnic and racial prejudice, authoritarian values of the political right, as well as with cultural conservatism in general (e.g. Houtman 2000;Stubager 2009). In line with these findings and theoretical considerations, it appears that anti-immigrant prejudice correlates with low cultural capital in general. ...
... Further, the negative effect of cultural capital on antiimmigrant prejudice corroborates the theoretical expectations and some of the previous findings (e.g. Houtman 2000). It could be argued that an intellectually stimulating family environment broadens students' capacity to recognize and understand cultural expressions and identify with minorities' social position (Bourdieu 1984;Houtman 2000;Rustenbach 2010), although one should not rule out the possibility of the result being an artefact of more educated participants responding in a socially desirable manner (however, see Austin et al. [2012] for the refute of this argument). ...
Article
The model of ethnification posits that in post-socialist contexts ethnic identities are used as a source for political mobilization against ethnic outgroups. In Croatia, this is further amplified by collective war experiences. This paper investigates the association between identity-based variables, related to ethnification and war experiences, and anti-immigrant prejudice in Croatia. The study employed structural equation modelling of the data from a large youth sample (N = 1,034). Higher ethnic threat, lower cultural capital, more exclusive conception of nationhood and right-wing political orientation predicted stronger anti-immigrant prejudice. Ethnic threat moderated the effect of political orientation on prejudice: under high ethnic threat there was no difference between left-wing and right-wing individuals. As the results correspond to findings from Western countries, we argue that comparable explanations of anti-immigrant prejudice may be applied to non-Western and Western contexts.
... The insight that the working class is liberal or progressive when it comes to issues of economic redistribution, but conservative or authoritarian when cultural issues of individual liberty and maintenance of social order are at stake, is one of the staples of political sociology (e.g. Lipset 1981, Middendorp 1991, Houtman 2001, Houtman 2003). In Lipset's classical formulation: " Economic liberalism refers to the conventional issues concerning redistribution of income, status, and power among the classes. ...
... Fleishman 1988, Heath et al. 1994, Middendorp 1991). When it comes to the explanation of economic liberalism, education and income can be considered aspects of the same class phenomenon, because a low level of education and a low income both lead to a preference of economic redistribution, thus confirming the logic of class analysis (De Witte & Billiet 1999, Scheepers et al. 1999, Wright 1985, Achterberg & Houtman 2006, Houtman 2001, Houtman 2003). When it comes to explaining non-economic types of political values, relating to the degree to which one emphasizes individual liberty – e.g., postmaterialism in the sense of Inglehart (1977) – or maintenance of social order – e.g., authoritarianism in the sense of Adorno et al. (1950) –, however, the picture is radically different. ...
... In this case, income does not have any explanatory power, whereas education strongly affects authoritarianism and postmaterialism (negatively and positively, respectively) (Houtman 2003). Inglehart (1977: 72-89) rightly concludes from this that education does not simply indicate class or occupational status (see also Houtman 2001, Houtman 2003). And indeed, it is by and large agreed today that working-class authoritarianism, unlike working-class economic progressiveness, has nothing to do with its weak economic position and everything with its limited level of education (e.g. ...
... The insight that the working class is liberal or progressive when it comes to issues of economic redistribution, but conservative or authoritarian when cultural issues of individual liberty and maintenance of social order are at stake, is one of the staples of political sociology (e.g. Lipset 1981, Middendorp 1991, Houtman, 2001, Houtman, 2003. In Lipset's classical formulation: "Economic liberalism refers to the conventional issues concerning redistribution of income, status, and power among the classes. ...
... The insight that the working class is liberal or progressive when it comes to issues of economic redistribution, but conservative or authoritarian when cultural issues of individual liberty and maintenance of social order are at stake, is one of the staples of political sociology (e.g. Lipset 1981, Middendorp 1991, Houtman, 2001, Houtman, 2003. In Lipset's classical formulation: "Economic liberalism refers to the conventional issues concerning redistribution of income, status, and power among the classes. ...
... When it comes to the explanation of economic liberalism, education and income can be considered aspects of the same class phenomenon, because a low level of education and a low income both lead to a preference of economic redistribution, thus confirming the logic of class analysis (De Witte & Billiet 1999, Scheepers et al. 1999, Wright 1985, Achterberg & Houtman, 2006, Houtman, 2001, Houtman, 2003. When it comes to explaining non-economic types of political values, relating to the degree to which one emphasizes individual liberty -e.g., postmaterialism in the sense of Inglehart (1977) -or maintenance of social order -e.g., authoritarianism in the sense of Adorno et al. (1950) -, however, the picture is radically different. ...
Article
By means of a re-analysis of the most relevant data source - the international social mobility and politics file - this paper criticizes the newly grown consensus in political sociology that class voting has declined since World War II. An increase of crosscutting cultural voting, rooted in educational differences, rather than a decline of class voting proves responsible for the decline of the traditional class-party alignments. Moreover, income differences have not become less, but more consequential for voting behavior during this period. It is concluded that the new consensus has been built on quicksand. Class is not dead – it has been buried alive under the increasing weight of cultural voting, systematically misinterpreted as a decline of class voting, due to the widespread application of the Alford index.
... Volgens de klassentheorie is steun voor de herverdeling van rijkdom en inkomen immers een directe afspiegeling van klassengebonden economische belangen (Clark, 1996;Lipset, 1981). Onderzoek heeft keer op keer aangetoond dat de zwakke economische positie van laagopgeleiden inderdaad hun steun voor egalitaire maatregelen aanstuurt (De Witte, 1997;Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Marshall et al., 1988;Svallfors, 1991;Wright, 1985;Van der Waal et al., 2007) en dat linkse partijen hun 'natuurlijke' bondgenoten zijn, omdat deze hun economische klassenbelangen vertegenwoordigen (zie bijvoorbeeld Alford, 1967;Clark & Lipset, 1991). Die klassenbelangen zijn echter niet universeel, zo stelt de etnische competitietheorie, maar afhankelijk van de etnische groep waartoe men behoort. ...
... Onderzoek heeft uitgewezen dat dit zowel geldt voor wat Bourdieu (1986) 'belichaamd' cultureel kapitaal noemt (consumptie van en participatie in 'hoge cultuur') als voor 'geïnstitutionaliseerd' cultureel kapitaal (opleiding) (Houtman, 2003;Houtman et al., 2008;Van der Waal, 2010). 2 Hierbij moet worden benadrukt dat, in tegenstelling tot het verband tussen opleidingsniveau en etnocentrisme, het verband tussen belichaamd cultureel kapitaal en culturele tolerantie niet kan worden geïnterpreteerd volgens de economische logica van de etnische competitietheorie. Anders dan opleidingsniveau is belichaamd cultureel kapitaal een niet-ambigue indicator voor iemands culturele positie aangezien het geen verband heeft met zuivere indicatoren voor economische positie zoals inkomen en werkloosheid (Ganzeboom, 1989;Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Van der Waal, 2010). Als zodanig heeft het in tegenstelling tot niet-ambigue indicatoren voor iemands economische positie zoals inkomen en werkloosheid weing tot geen invloed op economisch egalitarisme, maar wel een sterke invloed op culturele tolerantie (Achterberg & Houtman, 2006;Houtman, 1994;Houtman, 2001;Houtman, 2003;Houtman, Achterberg & Derks, 2008). ...
... Anders dan opleidingsniveau is belichaamd cultureel kapitaal een niet-ambigue indicator voor iemands culturele positie aangezien het geen verband heeft met zuivere indicatoren voor economische positie zoals inkomen en werkloosheid (Ganzeboom, 1989;Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Van der Waal, 2010). Als zodanig heeft het in tegenstelling tot niet-ambigue indicatoren voor iemands economische positie zoals inkomen en werkloosheid weing tot geen invloed op economisch egalitarisme, maar wel een sterke invloed op culturele tolerantie (Achterberg & Houtman, 2006;Houtman, 1994;Houtman, 2001;Houtman, 2003;Houtman, Achterberg & Derks, 2008). Dit suggereert reeds dat het verband tussen opleidingsniveau en culturele tolerantie moet worden geïnterpreteerd als cultureel in plaats van economisch gemotiveerd. ...
Article
Laagopgeleiden zijn meer dan hoogopgeleiden geneigd om voorkeur voor economische herverdeling gepaard te laten gaan met afkeer van sociale voorzieningen ten bate van etnische minderheden. Waarom zijn zij van mening dat sommigen gelijker zijn dan anderen? In dit artikel wordt onderzocht of hun opmerkelijke combinatie van economisch egalitarisme en ‘verzorgingsstaatschauvinisme’ voortkomt uit gebrekkige politieke competentie, hun zwakke economische positie of hun geringe cultureel kapitaal en de culturele onzekerheid die daarmee gepaard gaat.
... In order to understand the relative importance of education and class, it seems valuable to distinguish between socio-political orientations of a more cultural kind and those of a more economic kind Houtman 2001;Lipset 1981). Cultural liberalism generally refers to issues like attitudes towards gender roles, abortion and euthanasia; all of which are only loosely related to the production of economic wealth. ...
... 3. A different view on the impact of education states that education indicates attachment to cultural capital, which enhances progressive standpoints with regard to cultural issues (Houtman 2001). However, Houtman's association to cultural capital is a bit vague, as is Bourdieu's conception of it (Bourdieu 1984). ...
Article
This paper studies the impact of social class and education on political orientation. We distinguish the 'old' middle class from a new class of social/cultural specialists. However, the difference in their political orientation may especially be related to the level and field of education; the new middle class is more highly educated and often in fields of study that extensively address social competencies, characteristics independently affecting political outcomes. Analyses on Dutch data showed that education is more important in the prediction of 'cultural' liberal issues than social class. Economically-oriented issues are more strongly affected by social class. This means that interests of the new middle class are served by liberal standpoints relating to a strong government and income redistribution policies, but not relating to cultural issues.
... The principal cause is that the obsession with statistics in the 'Death of Class Debate' has obscured significant theoretical weaknesses and shortcomings, especially caused by the complete neglect of voting motives. Including these motives in our own research quickly revealed that the newly grown consensus of a decline in class voting in western countries had in fact been built on quicksand (Achterberg 2006, Houtman, 2001, 2003, Van der Waal et al. 2007). Figure 1 demonstrates why this is so. ...
... Among the general public it is basically unrelated to economic conservatism and unlike the latter it is also unrelated to class in an economic sense, i.e., to 'economic capital' in Bourdieu's (1984) sense. Yet, it is closely related to what Bourdieu calls 'cultural capital', measured in our research as high levels of education and participation in highbrow culture, either combined or as two separate variables (Houtman, 2001(Houtman, , 2003. The lower part of Figure 1 hence represents what we call 'cultural voting', i.e., voting for a leftist or rightist political party on the grounds of culturally progressive or conservative political values, respectively, grounded not so much in economic capital, but in cultural capital. ...
Chapter
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Sociology and Culture: An Unhappy Marriage Sociology took shape in the nineteenth century as an offshoot of Enlightenment thought, which critiqued religion, tradition, and belief as sources of ignorance and tutelage, conceiving of science, reason, and technology as their superior successors. These Enlightenment roots have had profound and lasting effects on sociology, not least by installing a blind spot for culture (Houtman 2003). In the hands of sociologists, culture got the connotation of premodern backwardness or even stupidity: it came to be understood as a lack of rational insight in the true nature of things – as the misunderstandings that people needed to be liberated from to enable the light of reason to shine and to make social progress possible (Seidman 1994: 19-53). This blind spot for culture still exists today, as can be seen from the notion of 'modernization', which was introduced in the mid-twentieth century by American sociologists to refer to the social transformations already studied by their classical predecessors. Until the present day, 'modernization' refers hardly, and certainly not in the first place, to processes of cultural change. It is primarily understood as a process of economic and technological change that especially takes place in the realms of work and organization and that is ultimately driven by new scientific knowledge and technological inventions. In their textbook Sociology: A Global Introduction, to cite just one example, Macionis and Plummer (1997: 673) define 'modernity' as "social patterns linked to industrialization" and 'modernization' as "the process of social change initiated by industrialization". This example could effortlessly be replaced by many others with the same effect: that industrial (or post-industrial) order is seen as constituting the major characteristic of modernity, from which its cultural features follow more or less logically and automatically.
... Indeed, their strong correlation suggests that it makes more sense to consider them highly interchangeable concepts. (Houtman, 2001: 163) Achterberg (2004: 337-8) shows the same lack of attention for differences between cultural issues: he describes the contrast between cultural conservatism and cultural progressiveness as a conflict about 'typical cultural issues such as "law and order", "rights of suppressed minorities, homosexuals and women" [and] "traditional moral values."' Similarly, Flanagan and Lee (2003: 239-240) designate items such as one's view on freedom of speech, the clarity of good and evil, and sexual freedom all as 'libertarian items'. ...
... Furthermore, studies aiming to show the rising salience of cultural voting behaviour (Achterberg, 2006;Achterberg & Houtman, 2006;Houtman, 2001) Notes 1 Both authors contributed equally to this article, which is a revised version of their bachelor's thesis in Sociology. 2 See appendix for details -the translations from Dutch are adopted from Middendorp (1991). ...
Article
Drawing upon problems of interpretation in political sociological research, this article questions the common practice of lumping together moral traditionalism and authoritarianism. First, it is demonstrated that of the two only moral traditionalism relates to religious orthodoxy. Second, the well-established strong correlation between both value orientations proves to be caused, in the case at hand solely by the circumstance that nontraditionalism and nonauthoritarianism go hand in hand; moral traditionalism and authoritarianism are almost unrelated. Third, moral traditionalists are shown to vote for Christian right-wing parties, whereas authoritarianism more commonly leads to a vote for a secular right-wing party. Fourth, whereas moral traditionalism proves decisive for the voting behavior of Christians, it is authoritarianism that underlies the non-Christian vote. These findings from The Netherlands (consistent with theories on cultural modernization) lead to the conclusion that attention should be paid to the distinction between these orientations because this aids the interpretation of research fi ndings, and because authoritarianism will probably gain a more central role in politics at the cost of moral traditionalism.
... Achterberg omschrijft de tegenstelling tussen cultureel conservatisme en culturele progressiviteit bijvoorbeeld als een conflict over 'typisch culturele issues als "recht en orde", "rechten van onderdrukten als minderheden, homoseksuelen en vrouwen" [en] "traditionele morele waarden" ' (2004: 337-8). Ook Flanagan en Lee (2003) en Houtman (2001Houtman ( , 2003 hebben weinig oog voor diversiteit in culturele kwesties. Laatstgenoemde stelt zelfs expliciet dat deze onderling verwisselbaar lijken: ...
... Sociologen die zich bezighouden met stemgedrag op basis van culturele waardeoriëntaties gaan voorbij aan deze belangrijke consequenties van het moderniseringsproces (cfr. Achterberg, 2004;Achterberg & Houtman, 2003;Flanagan & Lee, 2003;Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003De Witte & Billiet, 1999). ...
Article
This article demonstrates that studies in political sociology are flawed, because they fail to distinguish between moral conservatism/progressiveness and authoritarianism/libertarianism. Such a distinction is necessary, because historically and theoretically speaking, it is the process of modernization (de-pillarization in the Dutch case) that erodes the former’s salience and, through the alienation and anomie this creates, increases the latter’s. Hypotheses derived from this theory are strikingly confirmed. First, the well-established strong correlation between both value dimensions proves solely caused by the circumstance that moral progressiveness and libertarianism go hand in hand: moral conservatism and authoritarianism are almost unrelated. Second, whereas moral conservatism/progressiveness proves decisive for the voting behaviour of those who belong to a pillar, it is authoritarianism/libertarianism that underlies the vote of those who do no not belong to a pillar. It is concluded that the common practice in political sociology to lump both value dimensions together needs to be abandoned, because it produces theoretically unclear research findings.
... Some analysts find evidence for a declining trend in the salience of class-based politics (e.g., Clark, Lipset, and Rempel 2001;Hechter 2004) while others point to a persistence of class influence (e.g., Goldthorpe 2001;Hout, Brooks, and Manza 2001;Weakliem 2001). There is also evidence that the conventional methods of analyzing class increasingly underestimate its effects on social and political life (Houtman 2003) (more below). ...
... There is certainly no dearth of research countering the arguments of the declining significance of class on political views and voting patterns (e.g., Stonecash 2000;Stonecash and Mariani 2000;McCarty, Poole, and Rosenthal 2006;Isaac, Harrison, and Lipold 2008). When using family income as a proxy, the divide between classes 3 has recently been increasing when examining its effect on voting patterns (Stonecash 2000;Stonecash and Mariani 2000), and low income has been found to be a reliable predictor of economic liberalism (Houtman 2003). This same pattern has been demonstrated using election data over the last half of the 20 th century, with higher income individuals showing an increased propensity to support Republican candidates (Stonecash and Mariani 2000;McCarty, Pool, and Rosenthal 2006) as well as being more likely to identify as Republican (McCarty, Poole, and Rosenthal 2006). ...
... According to class theory, support for redistribution of wealth and income is a direct reflection of class-based economic interests (Clark, 1996; Lipset, 1981). Research has demonstrated time and again that it is the weak economic position of the lower educated that drives their support for egalitarian measures (De Witte, 1997; Houtman, 2001 Houtman, , 2003 Marshall et al., 1988; Svallfors, 1991; Wright, 1985; Van der Waal et al., 2007), and makes left-wing parties their 'natural' allies because these represent their class interests (e.g. Alford, 1967; Clark and Lipset, 1991). ...
... Each item could be answered with yes (1) or no (0). Respondents dependent on one or more of these four welfare arrangements were coded as 1, others were coded as 0. Drawing on Bourdieu (1986), we use cultural participation as a measure of cultural capital, which is common practice (Achterberg, 2006a, 2006b; Achterberg and Houtman, 2006; DiMaggio, 1982; DiMaggio and Mohr, 1985; Dumais, 2002; Eitle and Eitle, 2002; Houtman, 2001 Houtman, , 2003 Katsillis and Rubinson, 1990; Van der Waal, 2010). Cultural participation was measured by asking each respondent the number of books he or she owned 4 the number of novels he or she had read in the previous three months, the number of times he or she had been to concerts, the theatre, cabaret or ballet and art exhibitions 5 the frequency with which he or she speaks with others about art and culture, 6 and the extent to which he or she regards him-or herself as 'a lover of arts and culture'. ...
Article
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Various studies have demonstrated that while the lower educated support economic redistribution more than the higher educated do, they nonetheless dislike welfare support for immigrants more strongly. This paper aims to explain this remarkably particularistic application of the principle of economic egalitarianism (‘welfare chauvinism’) by testing three theories by means of survey data representative of the Dutch population (N = 1972). The first theory asserts that the low level of political competence of the lower educated is responsible, the second focuses on their weak economic position, and the third claims that their limited amount of cultural capital is decisive. Only the latter explanation is confirmed and implications for debates about ethnocentrism, deservingness and welfare state legitimacy, as well as the ideological profile of the lower-educated working class are discussed.
... After all, whereas it is typically hold that a working-class position gives rise to economic progressiveness on the one hand and authoritarianism on the other (e.g., Lipset 1959Lipset , 1981, this claim obscures that both types of values have quite different sources. Whereas a large amount of economic capital leads to economic conservatism, libertarianism stems from a large amount of cultural capital (Houtman, 2001(Houtman, , 2003(Houtman, , 2004. ...
Article
Paper prepared for the workshop Collapsing Cultural Canons: Elite Culture, Popular Culture, and Politics in Late Modernity Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Marseille, France, October 28-29, 2004
... Since then, many studies have indeed shown that an authoritarian ideology is prevalent among people in lower economic positions (Lipset, 1959(Lipset, , 1961Miller & Riessman, 1961) and predominantly among the lower educated (Dekker & Ester, 1987;Grabb, 1979;Houtman, 2004). In contemporary research, education is taken not only as a central indicator for socioeconomic position but also for cultural capital (DiMaggio, 1982;Houtman, 2001;Lamont & Lareau, 1988). Recent research by Achterberg and Houtman showed that cultural capital is decisive for one's opinions about cultural issues (Achterberg & Houtman, 2006;Houtman et al., 2008). ...
Article
This article examines the extent to which four major trends in welfare state reform – privatisation, increasing selectivity, increasing activation and increasing discipline – are supported and how this support can be explained. Using recent public opinion data of the Dutch population, it is found that there are two ideological dimensions underlying welfare reform support, the first tapping distributive reform, the latter tapping commodifying reform. While support for distributive reform in the direction of decreasing redistribution can solely be explained by economic interests and economic values, support for commodifying reform can also be explained culturally. It appears that one's cultural position and cultural ideological values are important for support for commodifying reform.
... Among the explanations advanced to account for this relationship, four stand out as particularly relevant. Three of these focus on the mediating role of psychodynamic variables such as mastering of the world (see, e.g., Jenssen & Engesbak 1994) of cognitive factors such as knowledge and sophistication (see, e.g., Stephens & Long 1970), as well as of class and income (see, e.g., Houtman 2001). While analyses have found the effects of class and income to be spurious once controlling for education, the psychodynamic and cognitive perspectives have received some support in empirical tests. ...
Article
The increasing importance of New Politics or authoritarian-libertarian values to electoral behaviour in advanced Western industrial democracies and the previously documented strong link between such values and educational attainment indicates that, contrary to the claims of some New Politics theorists, the ideological conflict is anchored in the social structure – in particular in educational groups. For this interpretation to be warranted, however, it should be possible to document the existence of education-based group identity and group consciousness related to the value conflict. The article develops indicators of the core variables out of Social Identity Theory. Based on a unique survey from Denmark, which includes the new set of indicators, the analyses show that members of the high and low education groups have developed both group identity and consciousness reflecting a conflict between the groups and that these factors are related to authoritarian-libertarian values. The results are interpreted as reflecting a relationship of dominance, which supports the view that the ideological conflict is structurally anchored.
... As a consequence, electoral behaviour would be increasingly influenced by specific political issues and by the actual government policy. The rising level of educational attainment may be partly responsible for this trend, to the extent that more educated voters are more willing and more able to make political decisions based on their personal evaluations of issues and candidates (Evans, 1999;Houtman, 2001). ...
Article
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This article analyzes trends over time in the relationship between social class and political preferences in EU countries. Multilevel models and logistic regression techniques are employed to examine Eurobarometer data for thirteen nations between 1976 and 2003. In the comparative research addressing the issue of long-term changes in class politics, class voting is the most common indicator. Instead of focussing on electoral behaviour, we analyze data on respondent's self-placement on a left-right scale. We argue that this indicator presents some relevant advantages when large-scale comparisons across time and space are involved. Our results point to a prevailing stability over time of the association between class position and political preferences.
... It is assumed that in both cases voting is driven by "new" cultural issues that as such tend to reverse the traditional class-party alignments as these emerge from the "old" class-based economic interests. We study in the current paper whether Inglehart's critics are right in this and to do so, we start with a critical discussion of how so-called "class voting" has been studied in the past and why this conventional approach mixes it up with the allegedly "new" type of "cultural voting" rather than systematically disentangling the two types (see also Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Achterberg, 2006;Achterberg & Houtman, 2006). ...
Article
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This article elaborates and tests the so-called theory of the new political culture (Ronald Inglehart et al.) by means of the Dutch part of the European Social Survey (2002). The analysis is restricted on theoretical grounds to voting for parties representing new politics (centering on cultural issues: populist party (LPF, new right) versus green party (GroenLinks, new left) and old politics (centering on class issues: social-democratic party (PVDA, old left) versus conservative party (VVD, old right)). The class theory of politics explains voting for PVDA or VVD very well. The working class votes for the PVDA and the more privileged classes for the VVD, due to economic progressiveness and economic conservatism, respectively. A cultural logic underlies voting for Greens or LPF, however, with the well educated voting for the Greens and the poorly educated for the LPF, driven by libertarianism and authoritarianism, respectively. It is concluded that class voting needs to be carefully distinguished from cultural voting and that we may not so much have been witnessing a decline in class voting since World War II, as typically maintained, but rather an increase in cultural voting.
... The foregoing implies that a bivariate relationship between an occupation-based class position and voting behavior effectively mixes up class voting, i.e., voting for a leftist (rightist) party on the basis of economic liberalism (conservatism) that is rooted in a weak (strong) class position, with what we shall henceforth call cultural voting, i.e., voting for a rightist (leftist) party on the basis of social conservatism (social liberalism) that is rooted in a limited (large) amount of cultural capital. 44 The latter type of voting needs to be distinguished from the former, because it is driven by a cultural rather than an economic voting motivation, stems from cultural capital rather than class in an economic sense, and cross pressures the electorate to vote contradictory to its class-based economic interests. a failure to distinguish cultural voting from class voting tends to produce a serious underestimation of the latter. ...
Article
Full-text available
By means of a reanalysis of the most relevant data source—the International Social Mobility and Politics File—this article criticizes the newly grown consensus in political sociology that class voting has declined since World War II. An increase in crosscutting cultural voting, rooted in educational differences rather than a decline in class voting, proves responsible for the decline of traditional class-party alignments. Moreover, income differences have not become less but more consequential for voting behavior during this period. It is concluded that the new consensus has been built on quicksand. Class is not dead—it has been buried alive under the increasing weight of cultural voting, systematically misinterpreted as a decline in class voting because of the widespread application of the so-called Alford index.
... The first set of findings shows that less educated natives particularly resist immigrants who are ethnically and/or culturally different (Dustmann and Preston 2007;Fuchs, Gerhards, and Roller 1993;Sniderman, Hagendoorn, and Prior 2004;Sniderman and Hagendoorn 2007) and that they consider immigrants a cultural rather than an economic threat (Kluegel and Smith 1983;O'Rourke and Sinnott 2006;Sniderman, Hagendoorn, and Prior 2004;Sniderman and Hagendoorn 2007). The second set of findings suggests that the ethnocentrism of less educated natives is rooted in their cultural background rather than the fierce competition over scarce resources they have to face up to: Ethnocentrism cannot, or hardly, be explained from their weak labor market position, measured unambiguously in terms of income or unemployment, but education is decisive in and of itself (Achterberg and Houtman 2006;Elchardus and Siongers 2009;Houtman 2001Houtman , 2003Houtman, Achterberg, and Derks 2008;Van der Waal 2010a, 2010bVan der Waal and Burgers 2011;Van der Waal et al. 2010;Zipp 1986). ...
Article
This article studies whether and why less educated natives are less ethnocentric in postindustrial Dutch cities than in industrial ones, as suggested by several theories in urban studies. A multilevel analysis of survey data collected among the native working populations (source: Cultural Change in the Netherlands Surveys 2004 and 2006) of 22 Dutch metropolitan agglomerations (sources: Statistics Netherlands Statline and Atlas of Municipalities) confirms that those concerned are indeed less ethnocentric in the most postindustrial cities. This pattern proves not to stem from the better opportunities at the bottom end of the labor market in these cities, as the ethnic competition theory suggests, but from the more tolerant cultural climate in these cities, as emphasized by Richard Florida in his work on creative cities.
... We measured cultural liberalism using ethnic tolerance, which is widely considered to be indicative of cultural liberalism in general (e.g. Houtman, 2001;Inglehart et al., 2008). This was measured with four seven-point Likert items, with response categories ranging from 'completely disagree' to 'completely agree': 'Cultural life in the Netherlands is generally enriched by people coming to live here from other countries'; 'The Netherlands is made a better place to live by people coming to live here from other countries'; 'Foreigners living in the Netherlands should adapt to Dutch uses and customs'; and 'The Netherlands should have never let foreign guest workers in'. ...
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While ample research has scrutinised the causes and consequences of support for the European Union, a pressing question remains: what do people actually mean when they express support for, or opposition to, their country’s membership of the institution? We use Correlational Class Analysis to assess this. Our analysis of high-quality representative Dutch survey data ( n = 2053), including novel items informed by in-depth qualitative research, reveals that European Union support comes in three guises: federalist, non-federalist and instrumental-pragmatist Strikingly, many Europhiles are not federalists. In addition, we reveal that the social bases of the three types of support especially differ regarding political competence, political orientation, and media consumption. The implications for ongoing debates on European Union atttidues are discussed.
... Dat was in de jaren vijftig zo (Lipsitz 1965, Stouffer 1955) en dat is nog steeds zo (Dekker en Ester 1987, Grabb 1979, 1980, Bobo en Licari 1989. Een laag opleidingsniveau blijkt in dit geval dan ook niet een zwakke arbeidsmarktpositie tot uitdrukking te brengen, maar een geringe culturele bagage -of, om het in de terminologie van de Franse socioloog Pierre Bourdieu (1984) te formuleren: niet een geringe hoeveelheid 'economisch kapitaal', maar een geringe hoeveelheid 'cultureel kapitaal' is verantwoordelijk voor Lipsets 'autoritarisme van de arbeidersklasse' (zie hierover uitgebreider : Houtman 2001, Achterberg en Houtman 2006, Houtman et al., 2008. ...
... Dat was in de jaren vijftig zo (Lipsitz 1965, Stouffer 1955) en dat is nog steeds zo (Dekker en Ester 1987, Grabb 1979, 1980, Bobo en Licari 1989. Een laag opleidingsniveau blijkt in dit geval dan ook niet een zwakke arbeidsmarktpositie tot uitdrukking te brengen, maar een geringe culturele bagage -of, om het in de terminologie van de Franse socioloog Pierre Bourdieu (1984) te formuleren: niet een geringe hoeveelheid 'economisch kapitaal', maar een geringe hoeveelheid 'cultureel kapitaal' is verantwoordelijk voor Lipsets 'autoritarisme van de arbeidersklasse' (zie hierover uitgebreider : Houtman 2001, Achterberg en Houtman 2006, Houtman et al., 2008. ...
Article
Inleiding Nederland heeft zich lang kunnen koesteren in de illusie dat hier te lande voor extreem-rechtse en rechts-populistische politieke partijen geen draagvlak bestond. In de jaren tachtig wisten de Centrum Democraten van Hans Janmaat weliswaar enige electorale steun te verwerven, maar nieuw rechts bleef in Nederland al met al toch een betrekkelijk onbeduidend randverschijnsel. Pas in het inmiddels historische verkiezingsjaar 2002 veranderde dit met de stormachtige opkomst van Pim Fortuyn, die bij de Rotterdamse gemeenteraadsverkiezingen in maart van dat jaar maar liefst 35 procent van de stemmen behaalde en bij de daaropvolgende Tweede Kamerverkiezingen in mei zeventien procent. Het daarop geformeerde kabinet Balkenende I leed spoedig schipbreuk, vooral door geruzie en gekonkel binnen de LPF, waarna haar 26 Kamerzetels bij de verkiezingen van 2006 verdampten en de partij in 2008 zelfs werd opgeheven.
... Meanwhile, some analysts have claimed that the "new" politics of life choices-e.g. stances related to gender issues, environmental concerns and immigration policies-are shaped by purportedly non-class factors, such as education and status (Chan and Goldthorpe 2007;Chan et al. 2020;Houtman 2001). ...
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Although social class was once central to political sociology, it has become increasingly less so; many analysts now believe that one’s class position is less important in determining political attitudes and political party preferences. Simultaneously, more attention has been paid to what might be called the culturalization of politics, as epitomized by the US culture wars and stereotypes like the “latte-drinking liberal.” Here, political attitudes are regarded as primarily structured by people’s lifestyles and broader way of life. But do political preferences have to be explained by either relations of sociomaterial conditions (e.g. class) or cultural orientations (e.g. status and lifestyles)? In this article, we argue in favor of an approach that aims to reconcile these factors, allowing for the empirical mapping of whether and how they intersect in shaping political party preferences. We investigate this by using detailed Norwegian survey data to measure the extent to which intraclass heterogeneity in political party choices can be accounted for by the interaction between class and lifestyle. We employ a novel combination of Multiple Correspondence Analysis (MCA) and Chi-Squared Automatic Interaction Detection (CHAID). In drawing on constructed models of the social space and the space of lifestyles, we show that there are important correspondences between these spaces and that their interaction may help account for party choices. The results highlight the need for a more complex account than that suggested in recent works of cultural stratification research.
... As a consequence, we will also refer to possessing cultural capital as having affinity with elite culture. For the problem at hand, we stress that, in addition to underlying inequality reproduction via cultural reproduction in educational institutions and the labor market (Jaeger and Breen 2016;Rivera 2015), the unequal distribution of cultural capital between the less and more educated also has political ramifications (cf., Achterberg and Houtman 2006;Houtman 2001;Van der Waal, Achterberg, and Houtman 2007;Van der Waal et al. 2010;Van der Waal and De Koster 2015). Below, we theorize about how the less educated's low affinity with elite culture inspires disenfranchisement from the contemporary political order in Western societies. ...
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Much of the educational gradient in trust in politicians remains unexplained by prevailing theories on material resources and institutional knowledge. Our novel explanation theorizes that: in its relationship with trust in politicians, education is a status indicator; and the lower trust in politicians among the less educated reflects the latter’s opposition to the former’s status signaling. Analyses of representative Dutch survey data (n = 1,296) demonstrate that indicators of affinity with elite culture do indeed largely underlie the association between the level of education and trust in politicians. We discuss the relevance of our findings for debates on “culture wars.”
... Yet, it is clear that religion and moral traditionalism have not disappeared in even the most secularized Western-European countries(Halman and Draulans 2006) and it would be similarly wrong to assert that the authoritarianism-libertarianism divide did not exist before the 1980s (see for instanceLipset (1959) on working-class authoritarianism).While the two cultural value divides have hence always co-existed, processes of secularization appear to have sparked a quest for personal liberty that has led rejections of moral traditionalism and of authoritarianism to increasingly coincide, producing stronger correlations between scales measuring the two. While this makes it understandable why so many scholars of contemporary politics have treated the two value divides as together constituting one new value cleavage(Achterberg 2006;Evans, Heath, and Lalljee 1996;Flanagan and Lee 2003;Houtman 2001;De Witte and Billiet 1999), it is then in fact not so much moral traditionalism and authoritarianism that have come to coincide, but rather their rejections by those foregrounding values of personal liberty. If this is indeed what has happened, the strength of the relationship between the two cultural value divides should be stronger in contexts where religion is less prevalent, because processes of secularization there resulted in a sizeable group of population who reject both traditionalism and authoritarianism. ...
Article
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Moral traditionalism versus progressiveness and secular authoritarianism versus libertarianism are often understood as central to the same “new” cultural cleavage in politics. Despite the often-found sizable correlations between these two cultural value divides, the present paper theorizes that this relationship is not a cross-contextual constant, but rather a specific feature of secularized contexts where moral traditionalism is relatively marginal. We test this theory by means of a two-stage statistical analysis of the data from the four waves of the European Values Study (1981–2008) for 17 Western European countries. Our findings confirm that the two value divides are most strongly connected in the most secularized contexts because the latter are least morally traditionalist. While the two cultural divides hence tend to be distinct in more religious Western-European countries, they tend to coalesce into one single “new” cultural divide in more secular ones.
... Even though education is primarily a measure of the 'institutionalised' state of cultural capital, acting as a 'certificate of cultural competence' in society(Bourdieu, 1986), it also measures the potential to accumulate economic capital since education indicates a person's level of skills and trainingtheir human capital(Becker, 1964). Education is thus a somewhat ambiguous variable in social class analysis (seeHoutman, 2001). ...
Thesis
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This dissertation includes the following research goals: 1) To understand the nature of urban socioeconomic change from a multidimensional social class perspective; 2) To investigate possible consequences of socio-spatial inequality; 3) To study the influence of macro-level changes on civic participation and; 4) To analyse the role of local organisations in facilitating different forms of participation
... It is assumed that in both cases voting is driven by "new" cultural issues that as such tend to reverse the traditional class-party alignments as these emerge from the "old" class-based economic interests. We study in the current paper whether Inglehart's critics are right in this and to do so, we start with a critical discussion of how so-called "class voting" has been studied in the past and why this conventional approach mixes it up with the allegedly "new" type of "cultural voting" rather than systematically disentangling the two types (see also Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Achterberg, 2006;Achterberg & Houtman, 2006). ...
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This article elaborates and tests the so-called theory of the new political culture (Ronald Inglehart et al.) by means of the Dutch part of the European Social Survey (2002). The analysis is restricted on theoretical grounds to voting for parties representing new politics (centering on cultural issues: populist party (LPF, new right) versus green party (GroenLinks, new left) and old politics (centering on class issues: social-democratic party (PVDA, old left) versus conservative party (VVD, old right)). The class theory of politics explains voting for PVDA or VVD very well. The working class votes for the PVDA and the more privileged classes for the VVD, due to economic progressiveness and economic conservatism, respectively. A cultural logic underlies voting for Greens or LPF, however, with the well educated voting for the Greens and the poorly educated for the LPF, driven by libertarianism and authoritarianism, respectively. It is concluded that class voting needs to be carefully distinguished from cultural voting and that we may not so much have been witnessing a decline in class voting since World War II, as typically maintained, but rather an increase in cultural voting.
... Wright, 1985). Recently, this discussion has been supplemented by a line of research that points to the increasing importance of education as a key to understanding emerging cultural divides in politics (Kriesi, 1998;Houtman, 2001;Bovens & Wille, 2010;Stubager, 2010;Dolezal, 2010;Bornschier, 2011;Kriesi et al., 2012). Allardt (1968) and Kriesi (1998) argue that the "educational revolution" of the 1960s and 1970s, which has led to a significant expansion of higher education, has constituted a new "critical juncture" for the rise of new political differences and conflicts. ...
... Even though education is primarily a measure of the "institutionalized" state of cultural capital, acting as a "certificate of cultural competence" in society (Bourdieu, 1986), it also measures the potential to accumulate economic capital since education indicates a person's level of skills and training -their human capital (Becker, 1964). Education is thus a somewhat ambiguous variable in social class analysis (see Houtman, 2001). 6. ...
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Social class plays a central role in understanding the urban structure , yet its conceptualization and operationalization in urban studies are limited. We have used the Bourdieusian conception of social class, which conceives of class as the possession of economic, social and cultural capital, to establish the class structure of Rotterdam. We make a theoretical contribution to the literature by discussing how this conception provides new insights into the professionalization-polarization debate. Furthermore, we examine the spatial distributions of different class fractions, known as the geography of class. Based on two waves of a comprehensive city survey, we applied latent class analysis to develop an elaborate class typology consisting of seven social classes. We investigate how the class structure developed between 2008 and 2017 and analyze the changes in spatial class divisions. Our findings show that the transformation of the class structure is mainly driven by changes in cultural capital, that is, middle classes with high cultural capital replacing lower and middle classes with low cultural capital. Spatial analyses further reveal that classes are dispersed in specific ways and that these patterns of dispersion change over time. Finally, we reflect on the relevance of Bourdieu's work in studying the urban class structure.
... It is assumed that in both cases voting is driven by "new" cultural issues that as such tend to reverse the traditional class-party alignments as these emerge from the "old" class-based economic interests. We study in the current paper whether Inglehart's critics are right in this and to do so, we start with a critical discussion of how so-called "class voting" has been studied in the past and why this conventional approach mixes it up with the allegedly "new" type of "cultural voting" rather than systematically disentangling the two types (see also Houtman, 2001Houtman, , 2003Achterberg, 2006;Achterberg & Houtman, 2006). ...
... We gebruiken twee metingen die beide een reflectie zijn van cultureel kapitaal. Ten eerste is opleidingsniveau een erkende maat van de 'geïnstitutionaliseerde' component van cultureel kapitaal (Bourdieu 1986;Houtman 2001). Het behaalde opleidingsniveau is als volgt gecodeerd: laag opgeleid (geen opleiding, lager onderwijs, lbo, mavo, vmbo); middelbaar opgeleid (mbo, havo, vwo); en hoog opgeleid (hbo, wo). ...
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Studies by Savage et al. (2013) and Vrooman, Gijsberts and Boelhouwer (2014) introduce new class typologies that combine Bourdieu’s work with latent class analysis. This paper identifies this new research approach as Bourdieusian latent class analysis . We discuss the role of these studies within the social class debate and we review the merits and limitations of this approach. In addition, we show how the class structure of Rotterdam can be empirically established by studying the distribution of economic, social and cultural capital. We use the Neighbourhood Profile data (N = 14,040; 71 neighbourhoods) to develop a class typology that includes eight social groups. This class typology complements conventional indicators of neighbourhood socioeconomic status and can be used to study ‘social mix’ and gentrification.
... Because if class is not relevant any more, what then is responsible for the configuration of the contemporary political field? According to some, we should focus on variations in status (Chan and Goldthorpe 2005), while others contend that we now need to look primarily at education ( Van de Werfhorst and De Graaf 2004;Stubager 2010) or the differences in cultural competencies (Houtman 2001). Also, in Belgium, scholarly attention has shifted away from class and towards explaining variations in political attitudes by focusing on cultural preferences and education (Elchardus and Spruyt 2009;Elchardus et al. 2013). ...
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The aim of this paper is to investigate the logic behind lay people’s ideological position taking and how this is determined by class position. I therefore examine to what extent there exists a similarity between the configuration of the political field and the structure of the space of social classes. The paper includes a brief description of the two most salient political alignments today, namely the old economic alignment and the new cultural alignment, and an explanation of how this two-dimensional political structure pertains to the rise of the new middle class. Directly related to this, I also present a discussion on the importance of the ethical habitus to understand the mechanism behind class determined political position taking. Subsequently, based on survey data and using multiple correspondence analysis, I empirically reproduce this political structure for Flanders (Belgium). Finally, relying on the visualized regression technique, I demonstrate that there exists a clear structural similarity between the political field and the space of social classes, which is a strong indication that the class-engendered ethical habitus is, in fact, the underlying factor that gives structure to the variations in political attitudes.
... A look at the distribution of responses to the closed-ended items measuring traditionalism provides some support for the frequent scholarly assertion that greater privilege in the social class hierarchy is correlated with more tolerant, libertarian attitudes (Lipset 1959(Lipset , 1981Houtman 2001;Lamont 2000;Kitschelt 1994). College education erodes agreement with the assertions that "the newer lifestyles" are contributing to social breakdown and that more emphasis on "traditional family ties" would improve the state of the nation. ...
Article
This study examines the extent to which class repertoires of everyday personal evaluation translate into political judgments. It compares Michèle Lamont's accounts (1992, 2000) of class patterns in personal boundary-drawing practices with thematically similar political evaluations recorded in National Election Studies surveys conducted between 1972 and 2004. The evidence suggests that working class people are comparatively likely to translate everyday ethical judgments into policy-related evaluations. In contrast, middle class people are more likely to apply personal judgments to political candidates. In addition, working class people seem more disposed to evaluate policies according to their distributional import, while middle class people are comparatively likely to look to politics as an arena in which individual values can be inculcated.
... At least to some extent, people's class positions continue to influence political attitudes and voting along the economic divide between the socialist left and the neo-liberal right (Evans and Tilley, 2017). The issue of new politics is, however, a hot point of contention; it is typically seen as requiring an explanatory variable of its own, often education or cultural capital (Houtman, 2001). ...
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Questions of political conflict have always been central to class analysis; changing political fault lines were a key argument in the debates about the ‘death of class’. The ensuing ‘cultural turn’ in class analysis has shown how class continues to shape lives and experience, though often in new ways. In this article, we bring this mode of analysis to the political domain by unpacking how a multidimensional concept of class – based on the ideas of Bourdieu – can help make sense of contemporary political divisions. We demonstrate that there is a homological relation between the social space and the political space: pronounced political divisions between ‘old’ politics related to economic issues and ‘new’ politics related to ‘post-material values’ follow the volume and composition of capital. Importantly, the left/right divide seems more clearly related to the divide between cultural and economic capital than to the class hierarchy itself.
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According to welfare chauvinism, access to the welfare state should be reserved for the native population, whereas immigrants are seen as a drain on resources. The curious aspect of welfare chauvinism in Europe is that it is more prevalent in the East. Why is this the case? This article uses the European Social Survey (ESS) and the Life in Transition Survey (LITS) in order to locate the most robust individual-level determinants of welfare chauvinism for countries of both Eastern and Western Europe. The results suggest that there is no support for the socioeconomic explanation of welfare chauvinism. There is support for the cultural capital explanation of welfare chauvinism, but only for Western Europe. Finally, there is support for the theory that higher levels of trust lessen the likelihood that a person adopts welfare chauvinism. This finding holds for both Eastern and Western Europe.
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Over recent decades scholars have documented the increasing electoral salience across Western Europe of a new post-materialist or libertarian–authoritarian dimension. The theoretical status of this new dimension and its relation to extant cleavage structures – notably the class cleavage – has, however, been debated. This paper demonstrates that the dimension reflects a new education-based cleavage that has come into existence since the mid 1980s. Thus, analyses of Danish election surveys and party manifestoes show the linkage between the voters' educational level, their values, and their voting for authoritarian or libertarian parties – i.e. the existence of an education cleavage. Due to its status as one of the more advanced countries, Denmark can be seen as a least likely case for the existence of a structurally based cleavage; hence, the existence of the education cleavage in this country indicates that similar cleavages lie underneath the authoritarian–libertarian dimension in other countries as well.
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The literature on welfare state legitimacy generally views economic egalitarianism and support for the welfare state as closely related phenomena that can be measured by means of scales that are considered highly interchangeable. This research note argues that economic egalitarianism does not necessarily coincide with support for the welfare state. Moreover, our findings point out that, especially among those with the lowest levels of education, economic egalitarianism is related to anti-welfarism—a highly critical view of the welfare state. Based on an analysis of recent Dutch representative survey data (2006), this article aims to find out whether there are in fact two ideological dimensions—support for the welfare state and economic egalitarianism. Moreover, it is shown that both dimensions can be explained differently. Although both ideological dimensions are rooted in economic security, support for the welfare state also is rooted in feelings of anomie.
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By means of a reanalysis of the most relevant data source—the International Social Mobility and Politics File—this article criticizes the newly grown consensus in political sociology that class voting has declined since World War II. An increase in crosscutting cultural voting, rooted in educational differences rather than a decline in class voting, proves responsible for the decline of traditional class-party alignments. Moreover, income differences have not become less but more consequential for voting behavior during this period. It is concluded that the new consensus has been built on quicksand. Class is not dead—it has been buried alive under the increasing weight of cultural voting, systematically misinterpreted as a decline in class voting because of the widespread application of the so-called Alford index.
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This study compares the effect of EGP class, income and level of education on voting behaviour in Flanders and Wallonia and tests to what extent these effects are mediated by economic and cultural attitudes. Rather than using a left/right dichotomy or a one-dimensional left/right continuum, as is common in research on cleavage voting, we distinguish the main different parties in both regions. Using data from the 2008 European Social Survey, our Multinomial Logistic Regression analyses indicate some regional variation. We find that education generally plays a more important role in party choice in Flanders than in Wallonia, whereas income and EGP class are only relevant for party choice in Wallonia. These effects remain even when economic and cultural attitudes are controlled for. Furthermore, our analyses indicate that preferences for traditional left- or right-wing parties are influenced not only by economic concerns but also by education and cultural attitudes. Similarly, preferences for new left- or right-wing parties are affected by both education and income, as well as by attitudes towards economic and cultural issues, especially in Flanders. These results highlight the need to include all parties simultaneously when studying cleavage voting in multiparty systems.
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In this paper, we explore the voting behavior of naturalized U.S. citizens in the 2016 presidential election. Naturalized citizens constitute an increasingly important segment of the American electorate, due to growth in their numbers and their changing racial and ethnic composition. Using data from the 2016 CCES survey, we document differences in partisanship and voting behavior between the foreign-born and U.S.-born electorate, examine potential explanations for these differences, and then examine differences between the two groups in the salience of a number of different factors in determining voting behavior.
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Internationale waarnemers verbazen zich al tijden over het verhitte integratiedebat dat in Nederland woedt. Ze vragen zich af hoe zoiets mogelijk is in een land dat bekendstaat als baken van seculiere tolerantie. Dit roept de vraag op hoe etnische tolerantie en afwijzing van traditionele christelijke stellingnamen over morele vraagstukken zich tot elkaar verhouden. In dit artikel onderzoeken we daarom of en waarom het aanhangen van een post-Christelijke moraal voor sommigen leidt tot etnische intolerantie, terwijl het voor anderen samengaat met etnische tolerantie.
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This article draws on Pierre Bourdieu’s rethinking of social class to investigate the connection between class and politics in contemporary society. We introduce a new class scheme that incorporates an often neglected hallmark of Bourdieu’s approach, namely the distinction between class fractions based on the preponderance of economic or cultural capital possessed. By relating our two-dimensional concept of class to a two-dimensional political space, we will show that the relationship between class and politics is homological – the systems of class divisions and political divisions exhibit a corresponding structure. The hierarchical dimension of class is associated with the divide between liberal and anti-liberal views on what is sometimes dubbed ‘new’ politics, whereas the capital composition dimension is connected with the classical left vs. right divide in terms of issues of redistribution, social spending and government interventions in the economy. We conclude by discussing whether political attitudes should be seen as a form of taste and as such on par with cultural tastes.
Chapter
Der Beitrag gibt einen Überblick über soziologisch orientierte Analysen von Wahlverhalten. Es werden der mikro- und der makrosoziologische Erklärungsansatz dargestellt und diskutiert. Auf dieser Grundlage wird ein verallgemeinertes Modell zur Erklärung von Zusammenhängen zwischen soziodemographischen Merkmalen und Wahlverhalten formuliert. Im zweiten Teil werden ausführlich empirische Befunde zur Bedeutung von sozialer Schicht und Klasse einerseits und Religion und Konfession andererseits für das Wahlverhalten in Deutschland und anderen Demokratien dargestellt und diskutiert. Schlagworte: mikrosoziologischer Ansatz; makrosoziologischer Ansatz; cleavage; class voting; Religionswählen; homo sociologicus; soziale Milieus; cross-pressures.
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textabstractThe traditional class approach to politics maintains that the working class 'naturally' votes for left-wing parties because those represent their economic interests. This traditional working class voting pattern has however become less typical, giving rise to today's 'Death of Class Debate' in political sociology. Against this background, we study why so many people, working and middle class alike, today vote for parties that do not represent their 'real class interests'. Critically elaborating on Lipset's work on working-class authoritarianism and Inglehart's on post -materialism, we first confirm that 'natural' voting perfectly complies with the logic of class analysis. 'Unnatural' voting, however, is not driven by economic voting motivations and class, but by cultural voting motivations and cultural capital. Right wing working class voting is thus caused by its cultural conservatism that stems from its limited cultural capital. Voting for the two small leftist parties in Dutch politics underscores the significance of this cultural explanation: those with limited cultural capital and culturally conservative values vote for the Socialist Party ('old left') rather than the Greens ('new left'). The spectre of the rightist working class that haunts today's political sociology can thus be dispelled by breaking the traditional monopoly of the one-sided class approach and give a complementary cultural approach its proper place in the explanation of voting.
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Studies of the relationship between class position and political outlooks still only have a limited understanding of the class-related mechanisms that matter for ideological orientations. This article presents a comprehensive analysis of the mechanisms that link class position and left/right and authoritarian/libertarian orientations. Besides main factors such as income, career prospects, job security, education, class origin and class identification, the significance of work-related factors such as work autonomy, working in a team, a physically demanding job and a mentally demanding job is studied. The findings are based on a survey specifically designed for this purpose and collected in Sweden in 2008/2009. A great deal of the association between class position and left/right orientations is explained by socio-economic conditions; different classes sympathize with policies that will benefit them economically. Another important factor is class identification. Work-related factors also have relevance, but the effect of class position on left/right orientations works mainly through the remuneration system. Class position is also related to authoritarian/libertarian orientations. However, this relationship is less explained by socio-economic position per se, but is rather an effect of the educational system and its allocation of the workforce into different class positions. It also turns out that work-related factors do not explain the class effects; however, a physically demanding job shows a unique effect. Overall, our findings suggest that besides factors such as class position, income, education and class identification, we need to consider work-related aspects to derive a more complete understanding of the distribution of ideological orientations in Western societies.
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The pertinence of social classes to the understanding of political behaviour has been questioned. The purpose of this article is to propose some directions for a geographical approach of political behaviour centred on social classes. More precisely, we intend here to show how geography can participate in this major debate about the present relevance of social classes. To achieve this objective, a geographical analysis must integrate two major socio-political evolutions since the 1970s: the re-composition processes of social classes and the role of parties in the decline of class voting. Drawing on examples in Belgium, the paper proposes original multi-scalar analyses that take these evolutions into account. At local scale, we highlight fractures inside intermediate classes, which are associated to the fact that left wing segments of these classes are more inclined to live in core cities. At national level, we show the deepness of class and regional gaps in political attitudes despite relative dealignment in electoral behaviour, resulting in the difficulties for big national parties to keep together such a heterogeneous electoral support. Finally, we show how big left wing national parties are able to overcome these difficulties when they are associated to strong and dense local social networks.
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