Bli vuxen i arbetarstad fem ungdomar berättar om skola, arbete och det egna livet
Sammanfattning: In this dissertation, the lives of five young people living in Norrköping follows for five years (1998 – 2002) through fieldwork involving observations and recurring interviews.The objective of the study is to describe and analyse the development into adulthood and the creation of a (cultural) identity among a group of young people in a town, which used to be heavily working class. The objective is also to relate this to gender and class, institutional practices, the cultural legacy and changes in society.Primarily qualitative sociological research methods have been applied in the study. Ideas about social interaction and social processes derived from symbolic interactionism constitute one of the scientific foundations of the study.The study deals with the three key transitions; education, work and personal life. These transitions, which are essential to attaining adulthood, are emphasised and problematised in the study.In this study we can see that the process of individualisation in modern society has, in the context of the development of young people into adulthood, taken the form of a stream of messages to which they relate and in which society has, via institutional practices and rhetoric, played an active role. Factors such as gender, class and culture have constituted the conditions for the individualisation process. The mixed messages received by these young people have been representative of the discrepancy between general career possibilities and the actual opportunities which the youths in the study have encountered. These mixed messages have been mediated, as biographical schemes, at home (by parents), at school, in the context of institutional practices and, not least, via local politics, local media and in literature about the town.In its conclusion, this study points out that political and public discourse in Norrköping constitutes a bearer and “preserver” of a patriarchal tradition which contributes to preserving the negative image of the working-class town of Norrköping.
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