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The Moral Repertoires Behind Social Citizenship

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image of Comparative Sociology
For content published from 1960-2001, see International Journal of Comparative Sociology.

Dean (2004)’s taxonomy of moral repertoires explains contradictory and complex responses to questions about social citizenship in Britain. But are the moral repertoires identified in Britain relevant to other English-speaking ‘liberal’ welfare states? Analysis of interview and focus group data finds the taxonomy is useful for exploring ambivalent attitudes towards social citizenship in New Zealand, where popular discourse regarding responsibility and conditionality is more flexible and varied than that promoted by political elites. Responses do not always fall neatly within Dean’s (2004) taxonomy and context does matter in some cases, but the New Zealand findings largely support his view that popular discourse’s complexity and contradictions offer a space for galvanising social citizenship.

Affiliations: 1: Sociology, School of Social Sciences, University of Auckland Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1142 New Zealand


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