• The educational and occupational aspirations of young Sikh adults. An ethnographic study of the discourses and narratives of parents, teachers and adults in one London school.

      Burkitt, Ian; Sullivan, Paul W.; Brar, Bikram S. (University of BradfordDepartment of Social Sciences and Humanities, 2013-12-05)
      This research study explores how future educational and occupational aspirations are constructed by young Sikh adults. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten young Sikh adults, both their parents, and their teachers at one school in West London to investigate how future aspirations are constructed, which resources are employed, and why certain resources are used over others. In some previous research on aspirations and future choices, Sikhs have either been ignored or, instead, subsumed under the umbrella category of ¿Asian¿ and this study seeks to address this. Furthermore, the study seeks to shed light on how British-Sikh identities are constructed and intersected by social class, caste and gender. This is important to explore since it can have an impact upon how young adults are structured by educational policy. A ¿syncretic¿ social constructionist framework which predominantly draws upon Pierre Bourdieu¿s notions of habitus, capital and field, along with the cultural identity theories of Avtar Brah and Stuart Hall, is employed to investigate the construction of identities and aspirations. In addition, the study contains ethnographical elements as it is conducted on my ¿own¿ Sikh group and at my former secondary school. Consequently, I brought a set of assumptions to the research which, rather than disregard, I acknowledge since they highlight how I come to form certain interpretations of phenomena over others.