Document Type

Honors Project


Thank you, Erika Busse-Cardenas, Khaldoun Samman and Karin Aguilar-San Juan for serving on my honors committee and for guiding me throughout my time at Macalester. And a special thank you to Deborah Smith for sparking my interest in sociology and for bringing me to the Sociology Department.


How does institutional expansion modify the process of gentrification, and how is this modified process experienced by residents of the gentrifying community? I explore how this modified gentrification process unfolds in the setting of Boston’s Chinatown. I propose an analytical framework that joins the process of institutional expansion to the process of traditional gentrification, while also expanding this definition to include how the institutional expansion results in heightened social inequality and a loss in community resources along the lines of race and class. In Boston’s Chinatown, Tufts Medical Center and School continues to expand its institutional presence. I propose that institutional expansion heightens racial and class disparities. Not only does institutional expansion alter the physical appearances of the neighborhood and its class and racial demographics, but it also changes perceptions of who spaces belong to when neighborhood spaces are inscribed with white, middle class meanings. This in turn creates a rift in how extant community members perceive and derive meaning from these new, institutional spaces that have been coded as aloof and unwelcoming by a combination of both the social and physical characteristics of those spaces.

Included in

Sociology Commons



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