Cultural Boundaries & Power

ERMeCC Research Cluster

Researchers in this cluster investigate how cultural boundaries between different social groups are produced, reinforced, but also undone in the domains of the arts & culture field, businesses and the workplace, sports, media, but also in geographical spaces like Europe, the nation state or the city. We examine how differences in gender, race, ethnicity, religion, disability, social class, nationality or sexual preference lead to talents, skills, tendencies, likes and dislikes, opportunities and rights in these social domains and spaces. In sum, we focus on how discourses of difference create, guard but also challenge cultural boundaries and how, in turn, these enable and include some people, while disabling and excluding others. In this cluster researchers are concerned with important questions such as:

  • (Why) Do we think black athletes are naturally athletic?
  • (Why) Are people more racist online than they are offline?
  • (How) Does the colour of your skin influence your taste in music?
  • (When) Can gentrification be inclusive?
  • (How) Can everyone have equal rights and opportunities in the smart city?
  • (When) Do women have the same opportunities as men in pursuing a career in arts and culture?
  • (How) Can quotas push for more equality and diversity in the workplace?
  • (How) Can people use media technologies to feel at home, even when far removed from it?
  • (How) Do everyday symbols in the city inform our understanding of national culture?
  • (How) Can media challenge widespread assumptions about poverty?
  • (How) Do public media represent different publics in populist times?
  • (Why) Is there a difference between diversity on and off the football pitch?

Projects within this cluster

The research in this cluster is closely connected with current projects in the EUR-wide Vital Cities and Citizens research initiative.

Team Members

  • dr. (Isabel) I Awad Cherit

    dr. (Isabel) I Awad Cherit

    The underlying concern of her teaching and research is an understanding of the conditions for democratic communication and social justice against a backdrop of…
  • prof.dr. (Pauwke) PPL Berkers

    prof.dr. (Pauwke) PPL Berkers

    Pauwke Berkers is full professor Sociology of Popular Music, specifically in relation to Inclusion, Well-Being, and Resilience in the Department of Arts and…
  • dr. (Delia) DD Dumitrica

    dr. (Delia) DD Dumitrica

    Dr. Delia Dumitrica has joined Erasmus University's Department of Media and Communication in 2015 with a research and teaching expertise in Political…
  • dr. (Jiska) JM Engelbert

    dr. (Jiska) JM Engelbert

    Jiska Engelbert (PhD, Aberystwyth 2009) is Associate Professor in the Department of Media and Communication and the Erasmus Research Centre for Media…
  • dr. (Joep) J Hofhuis

    dr. (Joep) J Hofhuis

    Joep Hofhuis is an assistant professor at ESHCC’s Department of Media and Communication, where he specializes in intercultural and organizational communication…
  • dr. (Julian) JCF Schaap

    dr. (Julian) JCF Schaap

    Dr. Julian Schaap (Rotterdam, 1988) is Assistant-Professor Sociology of Music at the Department of Arts and Culture Studies. His research focuses on…
  • prof.dr. (Jacco) JC van Sterkenburg

    prof.dr. (Jacco) JC van Sterkenburg

    Jacco van Sterkenburg works as an Endowed Professor " 'Race' , Inclusion and Communication, specifically in relation to Football and Media" in the Department of…

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