Changing Landscapes for Childhood and Youth in Europe
Contemporary social transformations, characterised by multi-dimensional globalisation and technological change, have lent new impetus to the emergence of internationally oriented and interdisciplinary childhood and youth studies. Analysis of sharpened polarisations of chances and risks within and between generations in specific life circumstances meets up with the re-conceptualisation of childhood and youth as social constructions within the life-course. As such, insulated national discourses are no longer an adequate framework to address such issues: economic and cultural globalisation processes exert dual and reciprocal influences, restructuring societies and identities from within and without.
This collection offers a three-fold thematic focus: on the social construction of the life-course, privileging gendered and family transitions and transformations; on the contours of (not) belonging, in particular bringing migration and poverty into the spotlight; and on the potential of virtual worlds for creating and enabling new positive and negative forms of individual, social and political action on the part of young people. This collection thus offers a particular snapshot of the current landscape of childhood and youth studies, and it provides a set of exemplars from diverse national contexts. Each chapter can stand for itself – but the contributions are ordered thematically, not according to the corner of the world from which they derive. As the introductory chapter explores, the intention is – via a loose vectoring of theme and context – to encourage multiple opportunities for reflection on relations between the specificities and commonalities of children’s and young people’s lives today. This volume joins the growing library of scholarly resources for international and interdisciplinary childhood and youth studies; it brings together well-established and young scholars writing from an unusual range of national and cultural contexts. The collection will be of interest not simply for specialist researchers and those in related fields, but equally as a teaching and learning resource for higher education professionals and students in social sciences and education, including courses that link theory and research with policy and practice.
Lynne Chisholm, Professor for Education and Generation at the University of Innsbruck (Austria), specialises in comparative youth studies together with the social analysis of education and learning across the life-course. She is currently on secondment to UNESCO at its Institute for Lifelong Learning in Hamburg, Germany.
Vassiliki Deliyanni-Kouimtzis, Professor at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki School of Psychology in Greece, is a gender and education specialist, with a particular interest in regional, national and international educational action research to promote gender equality in schools, with teachers and in classrooms.
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Kerry Margaret Mallan
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