Societal images of youth: Representations and interpretations by youth actively engaged in their communities

De Anne K.Hilfinger Messias, Louise B. Jennings, M. Elizabeth Fore, Kerry McLoughlin, Deborah Parra-Medina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this paper, the authors explore representations and interpretations of images of youth that surfaced in discussions with groups of adolescents in four community youth organizations. As part of a larger multi-method study, adolescents created photo-essays on the theme ‘Youth Making a Difference in the Community.’ These projects then served as triggers for small-group discussions around the product and meaning of the exercise. In the analysis of the discussion-group transcripts, one of the striking findings was how these youth, in the processes of creating and reflecting on their photo-essays, perceived and challenged dominant societal images; reconstructed alternative images based on their personal and peer experiences; and valued visibility and recognition of youth’s contributions to the community as a way of changing the image of youth. The authors discuss implications for research and educational practices aimed at youth empowerment and recasting societal images.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)159-178
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education
Volume21
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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