Elena Magdalena CRĂCIUN
Department of Sociology, Faculty of Sociology and Social Work, University of Bucharest
During the NEC Fellowship, I will continue investigating ethnographically processes of subjectification as middle class in contemporary Romania and prepare new publication(s). I will employ data on material practices and habitual means through which middle classness becomes an articulated self-positioning, which has already been gathered between 2015 and 2017 through ethnographic research in Bucharest. In addition, I will collect more data about self-identification as middle class and the notion of ‘beautiful people’, with its aesthetic and ethical connotations, through semi-structured interviews and content analysis of mass media and social media. My claim is that the middle class is a moral category rather than a social one, and this is reflected in self-positioning as the moral middle ground of society. I move thus beyond the common observation that the middle class does not summon a sense of identity or allegiance to a group because it does not stand in opposition to another class.