Sociological Forum

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 563–582 | Cite as

Calendars and keys: The classification of “home” and “work”

  • Christena Nippert-Eng
Article

Abstract

This article presents a discussion of the relationship between classification systems and individuals' everyday activities. The concept of “boundary work” is defined as the practices that concretize and give meaning to mental frameworks by placing, maintaining, and challenging cultural categories. “Home” and “work” provide a case study for examining boundary work across a range of realm relationships, from those that are highly “integrating” to those that are highly “segmenting.” Boundary practices involving calendars and keys, clothes and appearances, eating and drinking, money, people and their representations (like photographs and gifts), talk styles and conversations, reading materials and habits, and work breaks (including lunches and vacations) are discussed. Mary Douglas's work on categorical purity helps illustrate the relationship between cognitive order and visible behavior seen in the boundary work of home and work.

Key words

work home boundaries classification culture practices everyday life 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Douglas, Mary 1975 Implicit Meanings: Essays in Anthropology. London: Routledge and Paul.Google Scholar
  2. 1985 Purity and Danger, ARK ed. (1966) London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.Google Scholar
  3. Durkheim, Emile 1965 The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life. (1912) New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  4. Durkheim, Emile and Marcel Mauss 1963 Primitive Classification. (1903) Translated and edited by Rodney Needham. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  5. Foucault, Michel 1973 The Order of Things. (1966) New York: Vintage Books.Google Scholar
  6. Freud, Sigmund 1966 Psychopathology of Everyday Life. (1917) New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  7. Mannheim, Karl 1985 Ideology and Utopia. (1936) San Diego, CA: Harvest/HBL.Google Scholar
  8. Nippert-Eng, Christena 1996 Home and Work: Negotiating Boundaries Through Everyday Life. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  9. Schwartz, Barry 1981 Vertical Classification. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  10. Simmel, Georg 1955 The web of group-affiliations. In R. Bendix (ed. and trans.), Conflict and the Web of Group-Affiliations. New York: Free Press.Google Scholar
  11. Williams, Raymond 1985 Keywords (1976). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Zerubavel, Eviatar 1985 Hidden Rhythms. (1981) Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  13. 1991 The Fine Line. New York: Free Press. forthcoming Social Mindscapes: An Invitation to Cognitive Sociology. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christena Nippert-Eng
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Social SciencesIllinois Institute of TechnologyChicago

Personalised recommendations