Buried treasures: An institutional ethnography of small school closures in rural Nova Scotia
LE3 .A278 2014
Master of Arts
This thesis is a case study of a local school community in rural Nova Scotia. In 2013, the school was closed and the students relocated to a larger school. Using standpoint theory and institutional ethnography, this research seeks to implement a sociology for people, by situating rural residents as the subjects of the sociological act of knowing. Their stories reveal the profound social and economic effects that school closure and consolidation have on a small rural community and its members. The research also explicates how democratic processes and the idea of “change” are often intended to benefit the ruling, capitalist, dominant, or upper class, at the expense of rural residents who tend to represent the lower socio-economic classes and those who hold less power. Finally, this thesis shows how individuals in the community demonstrated ineffective resistance due to a false sense of democracy.
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