Youth, Place and Theories of Belonging: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Youth, Place and Theories of Belonging

1st Edition

Edited by Sadia Habib, Michael RM Ward


180 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2019-08-21
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Drawing on interdisciplinary perspectives, Youth, Place and Theories of Belonging showcases cutting-edge empirical research on young people’s lifeworlds. The scholars demonstrate that belonging is personal, infused with individual and collective histories as well as interwoven with conceptions of place. In studying how young people adapt to social change the research highlights the plurality of belonging, as well as its temporal and fleeting nature.

In the field of youth studies, we have seen a recent emphasis on studying the ways youth live out everyday multiculturalisms in an increasingly globalised world. How young people negotiate belonging in everyday life and how they come to understand their positions in fragmented societies remain emerging areas of scholarship. Composed of twelve chapters, the collection references key sites and institutions in young people’s lives such as schools, community/cultural centres, neighbourhoods and spaces of consumption. Drawing from diverse areas such as the rural, the urban as well as displacements and mobilities, this international collection enhances our understanding of the theories employed in the study of youth identity practices.

Written in a direct and clear style, this collection of essays will be of interest to researchers working in geography, theories of affect, gender, mobility, performativities, and theories of space/place. Investigating how young people come to belong can open up new spaces and provide critical insights into young people’s identities.


"What I like about this book is that it is innovative and challenging, bringing new thinking to Youth Studies. It is taking the work on 'belonging' and 'place' to another level and showing how these concepts can help us understand young people's lives… a must read for people working in the Youth Studies field."

Alan France, Professor of Sociology, University of Auckland

"This is a wonderful collection of chapters theorizing the relationships between young people, place and belonging. Not only does it include researchers from a range of places around the globe, but it also includes a significant range of theoretical perspectives on belonging. More than that as well as some world-renowned youth studies scholars, it highlights the critical contributions of emerging and new researchers. A rich, illuminating and compelling read!"

Barbara Comber, Research Professor, University of South Australia

"In this timely and exceptional edited collection, an international set of social theorists offer up new forms and diverse ways of theorizing and connecting young people’s sense of place, space, identity and belonging; taking readers into some of the most forward-thinking provocations in sociology today."

Pamela Burnard, Professor of Creativities, University of Cambridge

Table of Contents

Introduction: Investigating Youth and Belonging

1. Expanding Theoretical Boundaries from Youth Transitions to Belonging and New Materiality

Johanna Wyn, Hernan Cuervo and Julia Cook

2. Surveillance, Belonging and Community Spaces for Young People from Refugee Backgrounds in Australia

Melanie Baak, Renae Summers, Shepard Masocha, Deirdre Tedmanson, Peter Gale, Johannes Pieters and Awit Kuac

3. Queering Timmies: Theorising LGBTQ Youth Claiming and Making Space in Surrey, BC, Canada

Jennifer Marchbank and Tiffany Muller Myrdahl

4. ‘Adults Decided Our Fate’: Children and Young People Navigating Space, Territory and Conflicting Identities and the ‘New’ Northern Ireland

Faith Gordon

5. Travel Imaginaries of Youth in New York City: History, Ethnicity and the Politics of Mobility

John Loewenthal and John Broughton

6. Women, Spatial Scales and Belonging: Signalling Inequality in Latin America

Ana Miranda and Milena Arancibia

7. Brotherhood and Belonging: Creating Pedagogic Spaces for Positive Discourses of Aboriginal Youth

Nayia Cominos, David Caldwell and Katie Gloede

8. Belonging Without Believing? Making Space for Marginal Masculinities at the Young Men’s Christian Association in the UK and The Gambia

Ross Wignall

9. Precarious Class Positions in Spam City: Youth, Place and Class in the ‘Missing Middle’

Katy McEwan

10. Arenas of Empowerment? Case Study of a ‘Multicultural’ High School in Oslo, Norway

Paul Thomas, Maren Seehawer and Sandra Fylkesnes

11. Local and Refugee Youth in Rural Australia: Negotiating Intercultural Relationships and Belonging in Rural Places

Rose Butler

12. Politics of Class and Belonging in Pakistan: Student Learning, Communities of Practice and Social Mobility

Muntasir Sattar

Conclusion: Youth and Belonging - Agency, Place and Negotiation

About the Editors

Sadia Habib is the author of Learning and Teaching British Values: Policies and Perspectives on British Identities (2017). She has nine years of teaching experience in UK schools and colleges. She holds a PhD from Goldsmiths, University of London, UK, where she conducted arts-based educational research with young Londoners to learn about their conceptions of local, national and transnational identities and belongings, as well as to observe the critical pedagogies involved in identity work in the classroom. She is co-founder of The Riz Test and co-editor of The Bookslamist.

Michael R. M. Ward is a Lecturer in Social Sciences at Swansea University. His work centres on the performance of working-class masculinities within and beyond educational institutions. He is the author of the award-winning book From Labouring to Learning: Working-Class Masculinities, Education and De-Industrialization (2015) and co-convener of the British Sociological Association Education Study Group. Dr Ward has held visiting scholarships in Canada, the USA, Iceland and Germany.

About the Series

Sociological Futures

Sociological Futures aims to be a flagship for new and innovative theories, methods and approaches to sociological issues and debates and ‘the social’ in the 21st century. This series of monographs and edited collections was inspired by vibrant wealth of BSA symposia on a wide variety of sociological themes. Edited by a team of experienced sociological researchers, and supported by the BSA, it covers a wide range of topics related to sociology and sociological research and will feature contemporary work that is theoretically and methodologically innovative, has local or global reach, as well as work that engages or reengages with classic debates in sociology bringing new perspectives to important and relevant topics.

The BSA is the professional association for sociologists and sociological research in the United Kingdom, with its extensive network of members, study groups and forums, and its dynamic programme of events. The Association engages with topics ranging from auto/biography to youth, climate change to violence against women, alcohol to sport, and Bourdieu to Weber. This book series represents the fruits of sociological enquiry, reaching a global audience, and offering a publication outlet for sociologists at all career and publishing stages, from the well-established to emerging sociologists, BSA or non-BSA members, from all parts of the world.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General