Call for papers: Theoretical Experiments in Youth Studies


A one-day symposium organised by The Australian Sociological Association Sociology of Youth Thematic Group Friday 27th November, 2015 Cairns, Australia (venue TBC) This symposium aims to open conceptual debates in the field of youth studies beyond the current dominant theoretical frameworks in the sociology of youth.

Current conceptual debates within youth studies often focus on the critical counterbalancing of concepts based on an established set of theoretical positions. Examples of these debates include social change / social continuity, reflexivities / habitus, transitions / generations, or subcultures / post-subcultures and structure / agency. While these debates have provided a fruitful means by which to explore the changing dynamics of young people’s lives, there is the risk that they become taken for granted as the theoretical positions that define youth studies. In a time when the taken for granted assumptions of sociology are being destabilised by theoretical challenges from a range of different ontological and disciplinary perspectives, opportunity exists to open new theoretical spaces within the field. In this context, this symposium invites contributions which experiment with new ways of understanding youth. Our aim is to allow the exploration of agendas in youth studies that go beyond the binaries that currently structure debate in this field.

To this end, the symposium provides a space for exploring new and perhaps ‘risky’ ideas and projects, or engaging with perspectives not currently recognised within youth studies. These perspectives may include, but are not limited to:

• Critical race and gender studies, and developments in feminist studies of youth

• Affect, non-representational, and Deleuzian approaches to youth

• Post-humanism and the remaking of youth

• New materialism and actor-network approaches to youth

• Southern theory and young people beyond the northern metropole

• Space, time, and youth

• Theoretical developments in the construction of youth, including concepts of belonging, generation, or new modes of cultural analysis

• Inequality and social change beyond the Beck vs. Bourdieu debates (NB: this does not exclude papers using these theorists – we just want to move beyond the one-or-the-other debates in the field)

If you would like to present on any of these themes, please email an abstract (400 words max), short biographical statement (max 50 words) and the key theme/s you intend to discuss (drawn from the list above) to before the 1st of August 2015.


About tasayouth

Blog of the Australian Sociological Association's Youth Thematic Group
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