1st Edition

Young People, Place and Identity

By Peter E. Hopkins Copyright 2010
    336 Pages 73 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    328 Pages 73 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Young People, Place and Identity offers a series of rich insights into young people’s everyday lives. What places do young people engage with on a daily basis? How do they use these places? How do their identities influence these contexts? By working through common-sense understandings of young people’s behaviours and the places they occupy, the author seeks to answer these and other questions. In doing so the book challenges and re-shapes understandings of young people’s relationships with different places and identities.

    The textbook is one of the first books to map out the scales, themes and sites engaged with by young people on a daily basis as they construct their multiple identities. The scales explored here include the body, neighbourhood and community, mobilities and transitions and urban-rural settings and how these all shape and are shaped by young people’s identities. Each chapter explores how social identities (such as race, gender, sexuality, class, disability and religion) are constructed within particular contexts and influenced by multiple processes of inclusion and exclusion. These discussions are supported by details of the research methods and ethical issues involved in researching young people’s lives. Drawing upon research from a range of contexts, including Europe, North America and Australasia, this book demonstrates the complex ways in which young people creatively shape, contest and resist their engagements with different places and identities. The range of issues, topics and case studies explored include: ethical and methodological issues in youth research; youth subcultures; experiences of home; territorialism; youth and crime; political engagement and participation; responses to global issues; engagements with different institutional contexts; negotiating public space; the transition to adulthood; drinking cultures. The author explores these issues through blending together original empirical research, theory and policy.

    Individual chapters are supported by key themes, project ideas and suggested further reading. Details of key authors, journals and research centres and organisations are also included at the end of the book. This textbook will be pertinent for undergraduate and postgraduate students and academic researchers interested in better understanding the relationships between young people, places and identities.

    Introduction  Part 1: Researching Young People, Place and Identity  2. Research with Young People  3. Ethical and Methodological Considerations  Part 2: Scales  4. Body  5. Home  6. Neighbourhood and Community  7. Nation  8. Global  Part 3: Themes and Sites  9. Institutions  10. The Street and Public Space  11. Migration, Mobilities and Transition  12. Urban-Rural  13. Conclusion


    Peter Hopkins is a Senior Lecturer in Social Geography in the School of Geography, Politics and Sociology at Newcastle University, UK. His research interests include: young people’s geographies; religion and place; and urban geographies of race, ethnicity and religion.

    "Young People, Place and Identity has bridged the scale gap in youth geographies by bringing us from localized understandings of young people to seeing the productions of youth spaces and identities across regional, national, and global lines. Hopkins' draws from his own and others' research with young people to work out youth perspectives on the construction and meanings of places such as 'home' and 'nation' with rich contextual details and stories from youth, but also links this empirical depth with significant new theoretical understandings that will push the discipline in fresh directions."                                    Meghan Cope, University of Vermont, USA

    "A much needed text which will be invaluable for both students and teachers interested in young people’s experience of identity and place. It brings a rich geographical sensibility to the study of young people’s lives and will be highly relevant across the social sciences."   Elizabeth A. Gagen, University of Hull, UK

    "Peter Hopkins has produced a valuable book that responds imaginatively to the rising interest amongst social scientists in questions of young people, place and identity. It is ambitious in its theoretical endeavour, broad in its geographic range and novel in its conceptual organisation. I'm sure it will appeal to social geographers and sociologists alike and the clarity of its writing and presentation will make it very popular with students."                                                                                                                    Professor Robert MacDonald, Teesside University, UK