Cultural capital accumulation and transfer of Singapore Chinese Businessperson.
Date of Issue2012
School of Humanities and Social Sciences
In this thesis , I applied the framework of capital theory developed by Pierre Bourdieu and the correlation between field and capital to analyze the dynamic accumulation and transformation of cultural capital by Singapore Chinese businesspersons. The study shows that in a unique society such as Singapore, Chinese businesspersons have to face the overlaps and collisions of local Chinese culture circle, local multicultural circle, western culture and mainland Chinese culture. Thus, there are three main groups to focus on: firstly, senior Chinese businesspersons that set up their business during the period 1920-1965; secondly, new local Chinese businesspersons in the 1980s; thirdly, new immigrant Chinese businesspersons in the 1990s. The Singapore Chinese businessperson experience shows that in the field and era of the senior Chinese businesspersons, social capital (though poor in quality) and embodied cultural capital are more valued; whereas in the field and era of the new local Chinese businesspersons and new immigrant Chinese businesspersons, the quality and quantity of individual cultural capital is the key to individual fame, social status and power. On the other hand, the effects of different types of capital depend on the intention and capability of each individual to convert.