Shared communities and shared understandings: the experiences of Asian women in a British university

Bhopal, Kalwant (2008) Shared communities and shared understandings: the experiences of Asian women in a British university. International Studies in Sociology of Education, 18, (3 & 4), 185-197. (doi:10.1080/09620210802492773).


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This article examines Asian women's experiences of belonging to communities of practice within higher education in Britain. The research explores the ways in which women engage in friendship and support networks, how they negotiate their identities and their experiences of being marginalised and 'different'. The research argues that Asian women within the university environment are engaged in 'communities of practice', which act as mechanisms through which they are able to find support, mutual engagement and understandings of shared belongings and shared identity. The paper draws on the work of Wenger (1998) to examine the processes of identity construction as experienced by Asian women in higher education. The research is based on 20 case study interviews conducted with Asian women in a university in the South East of England. The interviews were tape-recorded and the data transcribed. The data was analysed by using methods of grounded theory (Strauss and Corbin 1990).

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1080/09620210802492773
ISSNs: 0962-0214 (print)
Related URLs:
Keywords: asian women, university, communities, education, identity
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2361 Curriculum
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
L Education > LC Special aspects of education > LC5201 Education extension. Adult education. Continuing education
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Education > Social Justice and Inclusive Education
ePrint ID: 64000
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
September 2008Published
Date Deposited: 24 Nov 2008
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:48

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