Student estrangement in higher education: identity formation and the struggle against stigma

Costa, C., Taylor, Y., Goodfellow, C. and Ecochard, S. (2020) Student estrangement in higher education: identity formation and the struggle against stigma. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 41(5), pp. 685-700. (doi: 10.1080/01425692.2020.1770575)

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While investigation on family estrangement is growing within academic circles, research regarding the interconnection between experiences of estrangement and higher education (HE) is still limited. Sociological understandings of these issues are even scarcer, with policy interventions and practical guidance forming early interventions in HE. Set within the context of Scotland, this paper explores the experiences of HE students who are estranged from their family, and interrogates the ways students develop a sense of identity in the context of their academic lives. The paper applies Goffman’s work on stigma and identity management in relation to Bourdieu’s concept of capitals to cast a critical eye on the identity formation of estranged students. In doing so, we challenge normative assumptions of what it means to be a university student in contemporary society and urge institutions and policy makers to rethink the complexity of students’ academic lives in more inclusive ways.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This research was funded by the Carnegie Trust and the Society for Research in Higher Education.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Goodfellow, Ms Claire
Authors: Costa, C., Taylor, Y., Goodfellow, C., and Ecochard, S.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:British Journal of Sociology of Education
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):1465-3346
Published Online:16 June 2020

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