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Creating social citizenship:  Young people, ethnicity and participation in a Swedish local context
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health, Social Work and Behavioural Sciences, School of Social Work.
2012 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
  :   (English)
Abstract [en]

This thesis concerns social participation in the Swedish welfare state among young people from ethnic minorities, the opportunities open to them and the constraints they face. It focuses on the interplay between structural social conditions related to social exclusion and subjective experiences in everyday life among these young people. The aim is to study how experiences of social citizenship are manifested in everyday life, and how young women and men from ethnic minorities create opportunities and overcome obstacles. How can experiences of social citizenship be understood through acts of citizenship? How do such experiences become driving forces in constructing lived citizenship? The theoretical framework is based on Thomas Humphrey Marshall’s (1950) understanding of social citizenship, and incorporates contemporary debate aimed at further developing his approach. Special attention is paid to substantive social citizenship, which Tom Bottomore (1992) brought to the discussion, and the subjective perspective developed and emphasized by Ruth Lister (2003, 2007). The data material used in the empirical study includes qualitative interviews with seventeen young people, eleven women and six men, from various ethnic and national backgrounds in the age range of seventeen to twenty-six years. Most research in this field focuses on metropolitan suburban municipalities and large cities, whereas this study investigates young migrants living in a medium-sized Swedish town. Subjective experiences of opportunities for and constraints on achieving equality, social inclusion and social participation in everyday life are explored. These experiences become incentives for their resistance against ethnic discrimination and claims on inclusive social citizenship. One of the main findings is that the content and boundaries of social citizenship are constantly being defined and re-defined by the young people depending on their everyday experiences and the character of their social networks, and also on their length of residence in Sweden and their gender. The main conclusion is that young people are not passive victims of structural ethnic discrimination, but are active in the process of enacting themselves as citizens.

 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Växjö: Linnaeus University Press, 2012. , 285 p.
Series
Linnaeus University Dissertations, 102
Keyword [en]
active citizenship, ethnicity, everyday life experience, gender, lived citizenship, social citizenship, subjectivity, young people
Keyword [sv]
socialt medborgarskap, aktivt medborgarskap, etnicitet, erfarenheter i vardagen, genus, levt medborgarskap, subjektivitet, unga vuxna
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Social Sciences, Social Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-22250ISBN: 978-91-86983-84-0 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-22250DiVA: diva2:564026
Public defence
2012-11-23, IKEA-salen, Lûckligs plats, Växjö, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2012-11-01 Created: 2012-11-01 Last updated: 2012-12-17

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Citation style
  • apa
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