Snog Marry Avoid: The Moral Economies of Whiteness

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I have a guest blog at Celeb Youth entitled Snog Marry Avoid: The Moral Economies of Whiteness.

A blogger has written about it here.

About CelebYouth

“This is the website for a research project entitled: ‘The role of celebrity in young people’s classed and gendered aspirations’. It is being carried out by Heather Mendick and Laura Harvey at Brunel University and Kim Allen at Manchester Metropolitan University between September 2012 and April 2014 and funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

Why are we doing it?

There are growing concerns in the UK that celebrity is impacting negatively on young people’s aspirations. Politicians and teacher unions have spoken out on the ‘dangerous effects’ of celebrity, expressing fears that young people just want fame (as footballers’ wives or Reality TV stars) rather than achievement based on hard work and skill. This study builds on recent research suggesting that celebrity informs young people’s educational and career aspirations in complex ways. It will explore how accounts of aspiration within celebrity (e.g. stories of success, talent and self-realisation) shape young people’s imagined futures.

What are our research questions?

What discourses (powerful and conflicting social stories) of aspiration circulate in celebrity representations?


How do young people take-up these discourses in talking about their own aspirations?


How do discourses of aspiration in celebrity and young people’s take-up of these relate to social class and gender?

We will focus on social class and gender because a large body of research shows that these are central to young people’s educational and career aspirations and choices”.

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