A new strand of writing in political philosophy deals with the linkage–rather than the tension–between politics of recognition and politics of redistribution. This scholarship usually deals with two-dimensionally subordinated groups (e.g. poor ethnic minorities). In this case study, I explore empirically how such linkages may be manifested in regard to a mismatched status group. Focusing on low-income college-educated people (LICEP), and going beyond the traditional status inconsistency approach, I have explored how LICEP frame their social positioning mostly in terms of self-fulfillment and recognition. This is at odds with LICEP having a pivotal role in social protests globally. Taken together, the findings yield a configuration of a few recognition-redistribution interactions: Low material reward is experienced as misrecognition; LICEP-centered social protests are also about recognition of their lifestyle and are characterized by self-fulfillment potential for this group (i.e. creative environment); and the different modalities of self-fulfillment work as sources for LICEP activists’ biographies. This specific configuration takes us beyond abstract notions of the recognition-redistribution linkage and the double subordination examples.
- college graduates
- New class
- politics of recognition
- status inconsistency
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)