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Key Concepts in Youth Studies

Key Concepts in Youth Studies

May 2013 | 200 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
What is youth? How do we understand youth in its social and cultural context?

Mark Cieslik and Donald Simpson here provide a concise and readily accessible introduction to the interdisciplinary field of youth studies. Drawing upon the latest research and developments in the field, as well as discussing the fundamental ideas underlying the discipline as a whole, it offers a comprehensive yet unpacked understanding of youth as a social phenomenon.

Illuminating the many abstract and contested concepts within youth studies, the book offers explanations to questions such as:

  • How might we define youth?
  • How can we understand young people in relation to their social identities and practices?
  • What is the relationship between youth and social class?
  • How do youth cultures develop?
  • How can we understand youth in a globalized perspective?

 Key Concepts in Youth Studies stands out as a natural companion for students on youth studies, sociology, criminology and social science programmes. It will also be useful for youth practitioners such as social workers and teachers.

Introduction: Making Sense of Young People Today
Foundational Concepts, Issues and Debates
Defining Youth
Youth Transitions
Youth Cultures
Young People and Social Policies
Working with Young People
Researching Youth
Theorizing Youth
The History of Youth
Young People, Divisions and Inequality
Representations of Youth
Major Concepts, Issues and Debates
Youth Training
Social Networks and Social Capital
The Body
'Place' and Belonging
'Race' and Ethnicities
Informal Learning
Social Class
Politics, Protest and Social Movements
Work and Employment
The Youth Underclass

"Key Concepts in Youth Studies is an engaging, concise reference book that critically addresses new work in a rapidly changing social science field....Focusing on discourses, categories, methods, and research with young people, the authors address how social and political changes enable and constrain youths' opportunities in a rapidly changing world. Although many of the examples are UK-based, this is a valuable contribution to the literature on youth studies globally, the field's changing research, and future challenges. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates and above."

K.E. Gibson
University of Connecticut-Waterbury

Useful as a reference book, a study guide and an introductory primer, this clearly-written and well-organised text covers all the bases. For students of youth studies, this is one of the most accessible and useful introductory books on the market.

Steve Hall
Teeside University

A handy access point for students across disciplines to pinpoint contemporary areas of concern, debate and contestation within the field of youth studies. The book offers a timely focus on challenging social, cultural and economic issues as the youth agenda intensifies in its political relevance. The breadth of topics and further references material make this an invaluable aid to research and advanced study for both post and undergraduates.

Shane Blackman
Canterbury Christ Church University

Taps directly into current debates and developments in youth studies. It offers a succinct introduction to foundational concepts and issues such as the division between cultural and post-cultural approaches, as well as addressing more recent concerns, such as the idea that youth have become narcissistic. Comprehensive and accessible, this book provides an essential introduction to youth studies, guiding the reader towards an understanding of young people's lives in an increasingly complex, global, connected and also divided world.

Johanna Wyn
University of Melbourne

An excellent starting point for students and researchers new to youth studies. Through a series of well researched and accessible chapters, Cieslik and Simpson introduce readers to key themes and issues in youth research, from foundational concepts through to contemporary debates on a diverse range of specific research topics. Informed by up to date scholarship and acknowledging throughout the ever changing and complex nature of young people's lives, this is essential reading for those wishing to gain an overview of this dynamic field of research.

Sue Heath
University of Manchester

A mini-encyclopedia of youth studies. A window to global culture through the eyes of young people. A helpful tool for the next generations of youth researchers.

Carles Feixa
University of Lleida, Catalonia

Studies on sociology of youth in Turkish is rare and most of them are case studies. There is no supplementary book to explain key concepts and enable instructors and student to have a holistic view regarding this area.

This book provides a good starting point for youth studies field. For my course, I use it by translating it into Turkish and deliver to students. Unfortunately, due to the fact that they do not speak English, they have no chance to read the book before courses. For students in Turkey, examples given from UK and USA makes concepts a little bit harder to understand. I have to find examples from Turkey to enable them to comprehend better.

I really enjoy to read the book and use it in my lecture. However I sometimes cannot follow the structure of the sections. The link between paragraphs sometimes seems a little bit weak.

I think in the first part some sections might have been put together, so sections/subjects could have been clearer.

I got really exited about second part of the book. I think this part will draw attention of student much more than the first part.

I would like to thank the authors for writing this book and share it as an inspection copy.

Dr idil soyseckin
Sociology , Çankırı Karatekin University
October 7, 2016

A very useful brief overview of youth studies for students at undergraduate level. It gives a first step in understanding youth and main consorts and issues that the area is facing

Ms Irena Loveikaite
Department of Applied Arts, Waterford Institute of Technology
April 16, 2015

It had some very useful readings.

Ms Jane McGrath
Applied Arts, Waterford Institute of Technology
January 6, 2015

The module I coordinated last academic year was a relatively introductory course on the study of childhood, so a focus on youth was not appropriate at that stage. However, in re-designing the course, I may adopt the book as recommended reading for those students wishing to focus on the period of youth more specifically within childhood for their assignments.

Dr Claire Maxwell
Humanities, Institute of Education
September 24, 2014

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