Föräldraidentiteter i livsberättelser
Sammanfattning: This dissertation deals with relations between parents and child institutions such as childcare, school and child health centers in terms of an institutionalization of childhood and expressions of parental identities in life stories. The empirical study consists of thematic life story interviews with parents focusing on their experiences of meeting and relating to these child institutions. A perspective on life stories as socially situated action and identity performance is adopted that views the life stories as co-constructed in between the interviewee and the interviewer.
The aim of the dissertation is to contribute to an understanding of relations between parents and child institutions in Sweden that takes as its point of departure the expressions of parental identities. Methodologically, the dissertation also aims to further develop a way of working with life stories that makes the interviewer visible as co-constructor of life stories and expressions of identity.
The analyses is focused on expressions of parental identities through the storytelling and in the stories told. Parental identities took shape and form as performances and constructions of, for example, social subordination in relation to preschool staff and other parents, helpful intervention in school helping an inexperienced teacher, worries about children being different from other children and not fitting in at preschool and of gratefulness for help and support from childcare staff when being short of time and money. The identity expressions were then analyzed in relation to recurrent discourses in research on relations between parents and childinstitutions. The results show that dominant discourses of relations between parents and child institutions tend to construct parents as a homogenous group, thereby concealing how gender, social class, ethnicity and age, and the subsequent different constructions of children and childhood, structure and influence the relations between parents and child institutions and thereby also the institutionalization of childhood.
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