Understanding the Constructions of Identities by Young New Europeans: Kaleidoscopic selves

1st Edition

Alistair Ross

Published June 22, 2014
Reference - 218 Pages - 3 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9780415707404 - CAT# Y154939

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How do young people construct their identities in the complexity of their own country, belonging to the European Union, and being part of global society? This book is based on a unique empirical study of a thousand young people, aged between eleven and nineteen, from fifteen European countries. Covering East European states that joined the EU between 2004 and 2008, and the candidate states of Macedonia, Turkey, Iceland and Croatia, the complex interwoven narratives of young Europeans present an intricate and intriguing analysis of how identities are constructed.

Alistair Ross offers a significant original contribution to the literature on identities, providing a wealth of cross-national data and a wide range of significant theoretical possibilities across a group of related disciplinary areas. Fluid narratives of the self are shown to constitute a rich pattern that varies and modifies as it is seen through the different lenses of national culture, European institutions, and of outsiders.

Themes explored include:

  • the construction of identity
  • the ability to express multiple identities
  • agency and liminality
  • what being a European might mean
  • an emerging sense of contemporary nationalism and patriotism.

This book explains how young people frame their identities, drawing on discourses of culture and society and constructing them through interchanges with friends, family and the media. It will be of interest to academics and researchers in the fields of political sociology, education, European studies, and ethnicity and identity studies.

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