The black middle class: middle class Afro-Caribbeans: a racial fraction of the British middle class or a class fraction of a racial group

  • Sharon J. Daye

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


This research examines the relationship between 'race' and class in Britain. This is achieved by considering how these two concepts articulate in the overall structuring of class relationships in a society which is typified by the
incorporatation of black labour into a majority white society, This relationship is examined through an investigation of those black workers who occupy a position in the objectively defined middle class.
The basic theme underlying this research is that 'race, in the form of structural racism, plays a significant role at two levels. Firstly, it serves to structure the class position of black labour in Britain. Secondly, it serves to determine the type of race, class and political consciousness generated by black labour.
The study was carried out in the London area. Occupation was used as an indicator of 'objective' class position when selecting respondents to be included in the two survey populations required for the research. A 'network' approach was used to actually locate the respondents. In-depth interviews were carried out
with all the respondents.
The study concludes that the concepts of 'race' and class are not independent of each other in the overall structuring of class relationships between black and white labour. It is argued that the inter-relationship identified between these two concepts serves to highlight the fact that the structural position of black labour, the type of consciousness generated and the type of decisions taken by those who took part in the research are to a large extent a result of the structural constraints deriving from the effects of structural racism in Britain.
Date of AwardOct 1987
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorMark Johnson (Supervisor)


  • black middle class
  • middle class Afro-Caribbeans
  • racial fraction
  • British middle class
  • class fraction
  • racial group

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