“Capitalizing on Sport”: Sport, Physical Education and Social Capitals in Three Scottish Independent Schools

J. Horne, Bob Lingard, Shereen Benjamin, Joan Forbes, Kevin Stelfox

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


This paper develops from a larger research project investigating Social Capital in Scottish Independent Schools SISP).
The paper begins by outlining the research questions of the SISP. The main research question was: 'how do social and
other capitals work in and though independent schooling in Scotland?'. The paper will draw on the data collected in three
case study independent schools in Scotland. The analysis will be framed by a multiple capitals approach drawing
together and developing the work of Bourdieu and Putnam. The paper will draw out the major emergent themes and
'findings' across the three case study schools. In particular in this paper, emphasis will be given to the role of sport and
physical education as playing a role in bonding, bridging and branding the distinctive features of independent schooling.
Consistent with the multiple capitals approach discussion will consider the interrelationships and potential contradictions
between social capital, cosmopolitan capital (which structures aspirations towards mobility and global labour markets),
emotional capital (as part of contemporary cultural capital and necessary for success in new and emergent labour
markets constituted globally), and physical capital. In conclusion the paper will reflect upon what the study tells us about
the efficacy of the concept of social capital and how it might need to be augmented and developed to take account of
class and gender relations, and also to acknowledge other capitals.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 16 Apr 2009
Event British Sociological Association Annual Conference: The Challenge of Global Social Inquiry - Cardiff City Hall, Cardiff, United Kingdom
Duration: 16 Apr 200918 Apr 2009


Conference British Sociological Association Annual Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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