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ERIC Number: EJ812198
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1367-6261
Performing Risks: Catharsis, Carnival and Capital in the Risk Society
Morrissey, Sean Afnan
Journal of Youth Studies, v11 n4 p413-427 Aug 2008
This article examines different forms of voluntary risk-taking behaviour amongst young people living and learning in a risk society. It draws on research conducted with a Scottish dance-education company and a synthesis of Elisian, Bakhtinian and Bourdieusian theories. It argues that risk-taking may be particularly alluring in "societies of caution" in which youth experience significant levels of control and surveillance in schools and other heavily supervised contexts, and may also offer young people a means of solving some of the challenges presented by the risk society. However, access to relatively safe and supervised activities like (e.g. bungee jumping) is limited by the possession of various capital resources. Spontaneous and unregulated acts (e.g. trolley surfing) require far fewer capital resources. The study shows that successfully performing risks can assist young people to secure positions of belonging and status within desirable peer groups and to develop culturally venerated identities. Risk is often synonymous with hegemonic masculinity and, for young men specifically, voluntary risk-taking may be function as a strategy for avoiding culturally denigrated categories like "wimp" and "sissy". Thus, the paper is able to demonstrate the commonality of a range of activities, from physical risks to "identity risks". (Contains 2 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom