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`Habitus and Bureaucratic Routines', Cultural and Structural Factors in the Experience of Informal Care: A Qualitative Study of Bangladeshi Women Living in London / N. Ahmed; I. Rees Jones
Current Sociology, Volume: 56, Issue: 1, Pages: 57 - 76
Swansea University Author: Ahmed, Nilufar
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DOI (Published version): 10.1177/0011392107084379
This article draws on Bourdieu's notion of habitus to address the interaction between cultural and structural factors in influencing the experience of informal care among Bangladeshi women in London. The authors present a secondary analysis of a qualitative study focusing on the accounts of inf...
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This article draws on Bourdieu's notion of habitus to address the interaction between cultural and structural factors in influencing the experience of informal care among Bangladeshi women in London. The authors present a secondary analysis of a qualitative study focusing on the accounts of informal care. The data were drawn from a two-year study with Bangladeshi women aged 35—55. Thirty-two out of the 100 women in the original study were providing care, mostly in isolated circumstances and with little or no formal support. The authors analysed the accounts of these 32 women and in the context of high levels of suffering and distress, three key themes emerged: amplification of suffering, dispositions of duty and religion and entitlements and fields of struggle. The gaps in access to formal support faced by these women suggest that strong cultural and structural forces determined their experience of informal care and the meanings they attached to their role as informal carers. Drawing on the work of Bourdieu and others, the authors suggest that where there is a lack of agency and resistance to support services, the explanation needs to move beyond poor information and language issues to a more rounded understanding of relationship between habitus and conflicts over local fields of welfare
ethnicity, care, London, informal carers, Bangladeshi
College of Human and Health Sciences