The Spaces and Times of Youth Culture in the New Century

Wednesday, July 16, 2014: 4:00 PM
Room: F205
Oral Presentation
Carmen LECCARDI , University of Milano-Bicocca, Italy
It is starkly evident that in the new century young people’s biographical constructions must come to terms with conditions of: rapid social and cultural change, increasing choice and uncertainty, the loss of institutional reference points as models for action and the widespread perception of intensified risk. These phenomena tend to produce a contingent and situational form of identity, with a markedly individualised imprint that is closely related to the here-and-now. This contingent form of identity finds expression in a re-definition of the relationship with time-space in everyday life – the chronotope. In this process, everyday time-space arrangements progressively lose their traditional meanings in the realm of the taken-for-granted, the home of the ‘natural attitude’. Rather, young people's creative use of urban time-space assumes the form of a fully fledged strategy of action connected to a contingent and situational type of identity. In this framework of understanding, young people's cultural expressions can be understood as organised not so much as answers to ‘problems’, but rather as expressions of the active negotiation practices that young people themselves carry out in order to deal with contemporary risks and uncertainties.