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'' Hard Work''

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Avatar for CollinClowreed.1103
11 months ago

In this paper, I use interview data drawn from ethnographic work on a Division 1 collegiate cross country team at a large midwestern university in the United States to demonstrate the ways that possessive individualistic discourses around hard work are embodied in classed subjectivities. I find that middle class women, the products of concerted cultivation, tend to focus on the display of hard work, and have anxiety around the value of their production of a hard-working identity. Working class women tend to treat the experience of being disciplined as an athlete as a fortunate opportunity to build physical capital, using the hard work to benefit them as athletes rather than to build their identities. These different attitudes, affected by social class, interact with a dominant discourse around hard work demonstrating the interaction between agency and structure when it comes to forming identities.

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