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Middle Class Approaches to Social Security in Kenya

Title data

Kroeker, Lena:
Middle Class Approaches to Social Security in Kenya.
In: Kroeker, Lena ; O'Kane, David ; Scharrer, Tabea (ed.): Middle Classes in Africa : Changing Lives and Conceptual Challenges. - Cham : Palgrave Macmillan , 2018 . - pp. 272-293
ISBN 978-3-319-62148-7

Project information

Project title:
Project's official title
Project's id
Middle Classes on the Rise
No information

Project financing: Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung

Abstract in another language

This chapter focuses on social mobility and the ways in which people act to cushion themselves against the threat of declining social status and its material effects. The African middle class is typically presented as both expanding in size and as moving upward, socially. Little attention is paid to the threat of downward mobility, and the ways in which that threat influences middle-class
strategies to reproduce status. In this chapter, Kroeker argues that the middle class in Kenya has access to a variety of security arrangements derived from adequate and regular formal income. This distinguishes the middle from the lower class, which lacks such security. And still, the Kenyan middle class cannot rely solely on the social
protection promised by ‘modern’ institutions. It has to invest, instead, in a mix of social security arrangements including solidarity-based practices and those increasing social capital. Social capital, as Bourdieu defined it, is
a key resource for preventing loss of social status, as is the capacity to transform social capital into economic capital. In defining the middle class, at least in Kenya, these social capacities and entitlements (in the sense of
Sen) are as important as acquired property and wealth.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a book
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Social Security; Middle Classes; Africa; Kenya
Institutions of the University: Research Institutions > Research Centres > Institute of African Studies - IAS > Bayreuth Academy of Advanced African Studies - BAAAS
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Institute of African Studies - IAS
Research Institutions > Research Units > Bayreuth Academy of Advanced African Studies
Research Institutions > Research Units
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 300 Social sciences > 300 Social sciences, sociology and anthropology
300 Social sciences > 360 Social problems, social services
300 Social sciences > 390 Customs, etiquette, folklore
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2019 10:16
Last Modified: 21 Nov 2022 09:50