Cultures of Stigma, Deviance and Dissent

How and why are some groups and individuals marginalised? What forms does this marginalisation take? What does the marginalization of particular groups achieve?

Researchers in the Cultures of Stigma, Deviance and Dissent strand ask these questions as part of a wider concern to expose and oppose the processes of social inequality and social injustice. We examine the cultural mechanisms that produce a frightful, dangerous and threatening ‘Other’ in the collective consciousness and we investigate how ‘commonsense’ knowledge about various others takes hold in our everyday perceptions, habits, institutional practices, legal frameworks and political and socio-economic rationalities to become the ‘way things are’.

Our investigations pay sharp attention to historic and more contemporary social contexts, including the history of crime. Contextualising specific exclusions within wider political, economic, social, cultural and ideological systems enables to us to ask critical questions about the qualified nature of citizenship, personhood and humankind

Kelly’s research relates to twentieth century central and eastern Europe with particular focus on communist-era repression, political persecution, experiences of imprisonment and forced labour, criminality, social deviance and dissent. She can be contacted on

Jayne’s research focuses on the function stigma plays in the construction of ideal neoliberal citizens. She examines the class stigma, weightism and the social marginalisation of ageing and elderly citizens. She can be contacted on