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Not done and dusted: agency and structure in youth participation

conference contribution
posted on 2014-02-03, 00:00 authored by Ros BlackRos Black
A growing body of education policy and practice purports to educate young people to become reflexive citizens with the capacity to direct their own lives as well as to ‘make a difference’ in ways that improve the democratic fabric of society. This reinforces a discourse of youth agency that obscures the structural inequalities that continue to centrally influence some young people’s lives and to play themselves out in complex ways within schools. This paper discusses the findings of a recent study that employs concepts of risk and reflexive modernity to analyse the experience of young people in two Australian schools in areas of entrenched disadvantage where programs of youth participation have been introduced as part of the curriculum. It concludes that the debate about the relationship between agency and structure is one that is far from being done and dusted, but is one with which sociology must continue to engage.

History

Event

The Australian Sociological Association. Conference (2013 : Caufield, Victoria)

Series

TASA Conference

Pagination

1 - 12

Publisher

The Australian Sociological Association

Location

Caufield, Victoria

Place of publication

Hawthorn, Vic.

Start date

2013-11-25

End date

2013-11-28

ISBN-13

9780646911267

Language

eng

Publication classification

E1.1 Full written paper - refereed

Copyright notice

2013, Rosalyn Black

Title of proceedings

TASA 2013 : Proceedings of the Conference on Reflections, Intersections and Aspirations - 50 years of Australian Sociology

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