Urban middle class, lifestyle and taste in Keçiören and Çankaya, Ankara:distinction through home furniture, furnishing and decoration

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2011
Arslan, Zerrin
This dissertation aims to scrutinize the fractions of the Turkish middle class, based on Bourdieu’s theory of social, cultural, economic capitals and habitus. Distinction among the fractions was identified through lifestyles and tastes via home furnishing and decoration. A quantitative field research was conducted in two towns of Ankara, the capital city of Turkey, namely Keçiören and Çankaya, and the data was collected by applying a detailed questionnaire on a sample that is not representative. The data was analysed with SPSS. The outcomes of factor and multiple correspondence analyses were formulated as four fractions of the Turkish middle class: Lower/bitter, Middle/resentful, Upper/contemptuous, and Well-off/happy middle class. The structural and material conditions, social-psychological utterances of the respondents and interviewees, survey results, field notes and observations as well as insights collected from furniture/decoration magazines provided the basis for defining and naming these subcategories. This categorization is an important step for further studies of lifestyles and tastes of the fractions. Lifestyles were defined as everyday habits/routines/activities, and tastes as selections/arrangements of furniture/accessories of everyday life objects. The finding of the dissertation is that the middle class(es) in Ankara is stratified within itself and these fractions have different lifestyles and tastes of their own: The well-off/happy fraction has an ‘outgoing’ lifestyle, and ‘legitimate/highbrow taste’; the upper/contemptuous fraction has a ‘shopping mallcentred’ lifestyle, and ‘middlebrow taste’; the middle/resentful fraction has an ‘emulationcentred’ lifestyle and ‘popular taste’; finally, the lower/bitter fraction has a ‘‘stuck to home, family and neighbors’ lifestyle and ‘taste of necessity’.

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Citation Formats
Z. Arslan, “Urban middle class, lifestyle and taste in Keçiören and Çankaya, Ankara:distinction through home furniture, furnishing and decoration,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2011.