© 2019

The Public Life of Friendship

Work, Neighbourhood and Civil Society


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-viii
  2. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 1-21
  3. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 47-69
  4. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 101-131
  5. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 133-157
  6. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 181-210
  7. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 211-237
  8. Jennifer Wilkinson
    Pages 239-254
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 255-266

About this book


This book is about friendships in public settings today. Wilkinson examines friendships in the public settings of neighbourhoods, civil society and at work. Identifying the unique relevance which public friendships have to contemporary social problems, the chapters cover a range of topics, including work-life balance, women’s ‘double burden’ and their leisure deficit, and contemporary neighbouring initiatives. Wilkinson shows how ‘friendship time’ at work provides solutions to new social problems including privacy: with the modern workplace being hyper-public and emphasizing visibility, monitoring and 24/7 availability, friendship’s combination of voluntarism and trust enable a private refuge even in an open-plan office. The book also explores the way in which friendships in public settings like work and neighbourhood provide community to those in society who are more likely to be excluded from private familial intimacy.

The Public Life of Friendship will be of interest to students and scholars across a range of social science disciplines with an interest in friendship and the sociology of personal life.  


intimacy personal lives personal community families of choice individuation civic society work friends neighbour friends generation Y public relations work life balance

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.University of SydneySydneyAustralia

About the authors

Jennifer Wilkinson is Senior Lecturer in Sociology, University of Sydney, Australia.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title The Public Life of Friendship
  • Book Subtitle Work, Neighbourhood and Civil Society
  • Authors Jennifer Wilkinson
  • Series Title Palgrave Macmillan Studies in Family and Intimate Life
  • Series Abbreviated Title Palgrave Macmillan Studies in Family and Intimate Life
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2019
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-030-03160-2
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-030-03161-9
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages VIII, 266
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Sociology of Family, Youth and Aging
    Childhood, Adolescence and Society
    Sociology of Work
  • Buy this book on publisher's site