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  • 1.
    Andersson, Åsa
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Pedagogy and Sociology. University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Work and Social Pedagogy.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Psychology and Organisation Studies. University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    ”Jag skulle så jätte, jätte, jättegärna vilja ha ett fast jobb att gå till”: Om att vara ung och arbetslös i Västervik2015Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The centre of Child and Youth Studies at University West works strategically with other regional research environments and institutions that study children, youths and young adults. The goal of our research centre is to spread knowledge about the social conditions under which children and young people live, thereby strengthening their position in society. Collaboration with external research environments is one of the ways that our research domain works to reach that goal. Partnerships are formed through a model that strives to create good conditions for both our research and that of our partners. This model is grounded in a dialogue between research partners who work together to select areas of interest and formulate hypotheses. These research projects are financed equally by the university and our partners. The following report is the result of one of  these research partnerships.Advanced industrial society has been replaced by a society based upon knowledge and information where industrial work/manufacturing becomes less common. Västervik is one of the small towns in Sweden whose main industries have closed down or severely decreased their workforce during the last few decades of great structural change. The groups in the job market that have been most affected by these changes are young men and women, something which is evident in the high unemployment rates among the young population. The purpose of this study was to investigate young people’s own experiences and thoughts regarding their own situation as jobseekers in the municipality of Västervik. How do they see themselves and the situation they find themselves in? The narratives were collected in the form of 18 in-depth interviews with young men and women between the ages of 19-25, all them registered at the job center in Västervik. In the report different aspects of their situation are discussed, such as: the young people’s relation to their hometown, their thoughts on the meaning and value of work, the role of education, the economic, social and emotional consequences of unemployment, and their experiences of taking part in various programs for unemployed. The narratives we have encountered can be seen as having some general validity in the sense that many of their experiences are probably shared by other unemployed young people in other locations in Sweden, but Västervik is also a specific town with a specific history and specific conditions.The young men and women have an ambivalent relationship to their hometown. On the one hand they want to start a life in the same location, but on the other, the future there is seen as very uncertain. Many of those interviewed would like to have the kind of industrial jobs that their parents have and grandparents experienced, but which are nowadays less and less common. The norm of a fulltime job is strong among the young men and women – something which strengthens the image of the evident dissonance between their seemingly traditional dreams and intentions and the structures of possibilities the municipality and community suggest for them. Connected to this are the ways the young people must relate to the postindustrial demands of employability – which means the ability to enterprise and market oneself on a competitive market. These demands presuppose abilities that are more likely to be socialized and practiced in certain social environments rather than in others, and the majority of the young men and women interviewed have a background in aworking class environment where these values and approaches are far from selfevident.The socioeconomic marginalization that these young people experienceresults in much curtailed possibilities for a period of youthful experimentation aswell as for an expected adulthood. Being unemployed means one has difficulty ingaining the status of an adult, but due to economic shortages, there are also limits to how much they can take part in this experimental lifestyle that characterizes youth. The young men and women’s situation can thereby be seen as a grey zone; they are neither young nor adults in the normative sense. In some of the narratives the young people express critical thoughts with regard to the social conditions that their difficult situation can be related to. By extension, expressing these thoughts and stating their opinion can be strengthening and mobilizing for them, both as individuals and as a group. Insights may be gained about unemployment as a shared experience rather than as a personal failure

  • 2.
    Andersson, Åsa
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Pedagogy and Sociology.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Psychology and organization studies.
    Young and working-class without work2016In: Nordic Youth Research Symposium: Youth Moves – Voices – Spaces – Subjectivities, Trollhättan: Högskolan Väst , 2016, p. 41-41Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper discusses narratives from young unemployed working class men and women, living in a small Swedish town located outside the emerging economic regions. Like in many other European countries the rate of unemployment among youth is disproportionally high in Sweden. The empirical work the study is based on consists of a sample of in-depth interviews with men and women in the ages of 19-24, conducted during 2014. The main research question of the study is about how young unemployed people experience and reflect upon their own situation. Industrial societies have turned post-industrialand this is reflected in the social structure of the communities that for decades used to be dominated by industries and smaller factories. The labor market has undergone major structural changes during the last four decades. Since the cultural and social identity of the working class traditionally has been closely connected to an intergenerational continuity where foundational elements are defined by work and a belonging to the local community, the situation of unemployment means that the identities as well as the community are forced to be reimagined. The narratives from the young men and women in our study can be seen to reflect social and cultural changes that have taken place on a structural level concerning the labor market, the education system and alsothe changed conditions for the formation of social identities. We make use of Margaret Archers concepts contextual discontinuity and contextual incongruity in understanding and discussing these tendencies.

  • 3.
    Andersson, Åsa
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Pedagogy and Sociology.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Psychology and Organisation Studies.
    Young working class men without work: re-imagining masculinity in post-industrial societies2015Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper discusses narratives from young working class men, living in a small Swedish town located outside the emerging economic regions. Like in many other European countries the rate of unemployment among youth is disproportionally high in Sweden. From a broad material of in-depth interviews with unemployed young people the issue of masculinity in relation to work is an emerging, though not always specified or articulated, theme. Industrial societies has turned post-industrial. The labor market has undergone major structural changes during the last four decades and since working class masculinity traditionally has been closely connected to wage labor and to the ability to provide for oneself as well as for others - being the main breadwinner of the family - masculinity is forced to be re-imagined. In the ongoing construction of identity and young masculinity, nostalgic images of a recently lost way of life where employment meant hard labor but also a durable and respected position in the community, are retold. Parallel to these narratives and sometimes in opposition to them, there are also wishes and dreams of alternative ways of relating one's own role, identity and masculinity to a different set of work ethics where neither wage labor nor traditional masculinity need to form it´s stable categories.

  • 4.
    Andersson, Åsa
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Work and Social Pedagogy. Göteborgs universitet.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    Young Working-Class Men Without Jobs: Reimagining Work and Masculinityin Postindustrial Sweden2017In: Masculinity, Labour,and Neoliberalism: Working-Class Men in International Perspective / [ed] Charlie Walker & Steven Roberts (Eds), Cham: Springer Publishing Company, 2017, p. 101-123Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    "Det handlar om att kompromissa": Unga Vuxna Samtalar Om Livsval, Framtidstankar Och Hur Det Är Att Bo Och Studera I Västerviks Kommun2018Report (Other academic)
  • 6.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    Exempel 10: Ung och arbetslös i Västervik2019In: Samverkansforskning: att främja barns och ungas välfärd / [ed] Lena Nilsson & Emma Sorbring (red.), Stockholm: Liber, 2019, p. 100-106Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 7.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Psychology and organization studies.
    Re-imagining Work and Masculinity in a Postindustrial Society2016Conference paper (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper discusses the narratives of young working-class men, living in a small town in Sweden that is located outside the regions with economic growth. As in many other European countries, the rate of unemployment among Swedish youth is disproportionally high. Based upon material consisting of in-depth interviews with unemployed young men, the paper will analyze the changed meaning of masculinity in relation to work in a postindustrial society. Since working-class masculinity has traditionally been closely connected to wage labor and to the ability to provide for oneself as well as being the breadwinner of the family, the lack of resources that unemployment implies, means that masculinity and its relational implications must be re-imagined. The young men's narratives can thereby be seen to reflect social and cultural changes that have taken place on a structural level related to the labor market, the educational system, as well as the changed conditions for the formation of social identities. The intergenerational working-class culture on the one hand and neoliberal ideas permeating activities for the unemployed, such as training- and coaching-programs, on the other – serve as reference points for the young men's experience of subordination. In many ways the situation described was marked by deficiency and vulnerability, an effect of the social division of today, where the long-term unemployed are depicted as 'abject others' and even more so if placed in subordinated categories such as (non)working-class males, living in the back country. But what also can be traced in the young men's own narratives are some critical reflections and possible alternative ways of forming social identities and masculinities. This is furthermore related to different kinds of work ethics than the familiar one they have been socialized into when growing up and the other one that they have met as jobseekers.

  • 8.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages. Göteborgs universitet, Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Göteborg.
    Väntan: Etnografiskt kollage kring ett mellanrum2009Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This dissertation is about waiting. It's about what happens when an ethnographer goes into the field and asks people to fill a small and indeterminate word like waiting with thoughts, experiences and recollections. The study is primarily based on twenty qualitative interviews with thirteen interviewees in Gothenburg. The interviewees were selected from the ethnographer's own circle of acquaintances and constitute a fairly homogenous group of individuals. They are early middle-aged, were brought up in Sweden during the 1960s and 1970s, belong to a relatively well-educated lower middle-class, have artistic/cultural interests and work in the public/cultural sector. In an attempt to put the interviewees' narratives into a wider context, I have collected and used supplementary material in the form of different narratives communicated, for example, through the mass media, fiction, DIY-books, popular science and art. A central point of departure in the study is that the words we use are filled with meanings that we ourselves assign to them, and that an interview is a form of narrative in which knowledge is constructed at that particular moment in time. The aim of this dissertation is to study some of the articulations of waiting. What kind of waiting is highlighted in the narratives of waiting in every day life? Which words, themes, images, characters and motifs are available to use and grapple with? What is the purpose of waiting, and which ideals, norms and perceptions connected with waiting emerge? By listening to and studying the articulations of waiting I capture a time-dimension – that is partly about an everyday perception and organisation of time and partly about a central aspect of becoming a subject at a more existential level. The aspect of time that has been captured here indicates that waiting is about change. When subjectivity is understood as something that happens, an activity, an action or a process, movement is at the core. Being or becoming a subject demands transition and change – the movement from one state to another. Fulfilling oneself means moving between the different positions that one seeks to occupy. Waiting can thus be said to capture the actual passage, which means that this state that we usually define as something stationary and uneventful is actually an important productive mechanism. This then constitutes the actual effort, attempt and charging up involved in being able to attain something else. The driving force in all these processes is different kinds of imagined needs – the need to become a subject and be fulfilled.

  • 9.
    Beckman, Anita
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    Andersson, Åsa
    Göteborgs universitet.
    "Jag skulle så jätte, jätte, jättegärna vilja ha ett fast jobb att gå  till": om att vara ung och arbetslös i Västervik2017Report (Other academic)
  • 10.
    Beckman, Anita
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    Andersson, Åsa
    Göteborgs universitet, Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Sverige.
    "Kvar vid barnbordet...": om unga vuxna utanför arbetsmarknaden2018In: Barn och ungdomsvetenskap: grundläggande perspektiv / [ed] Johansson, Thomas & Sorbring, Emma, Stockholm: Liber, 2018, p. 529-543Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 11.
    Holm, Susanne
    et al.
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Work and Social Pedagogy.
    Henriksen, Anna
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Psychology, Pedagogy and Sociology.
    Beckman, Anita
    University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division for Educational Science and Languages.
    "Här är ganska nice, men...": Ungdomars tankar om Västervik och om vad som är viktigt i livet2019Report (Other academic)
1 - 11 of 11
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