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Middle class enclaves and escapes



Middle class enclaves and escapes. A special edition of Thinking Allowed partly recorded at the British Sociological Association's 2013 conference.Privatised neighbourhoods and lifestyle migration are a global phenomenon. Increasingly, it seems, middle class people with sufficient capital are choosing to 'opt out' of urban environments, or, at least, to shield themselves from their more 'dangerous' elements, namely the poorer residents. Laurie Taylor talks to a range of academics who have researched the various manifestations of this desire for enclaves, escapes and the 'good life'. Can the broader social dynamics and conflicts of a society be understood by examining evolving form of housing and urban flight?Maggy Lee talks about the rapid expansion of residential tourism and 'lifestyle migration' between Hong Kong and mainland China, as the 'well off' buy up high end, gated communities. Nick Osbaldiston looks at 'lifestyle migrants' in Australia who move to small, mainly coastal communities, representing a middle class 'takeover'. And Ceren Yalcin explores the proliferation of 'sealed off' housing complexes in Istanbul. They're joined by Rowland Atkinson who has done extensive research into gentrification, gated communities and housing inequality.

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