Exciting news: Youth Work Event

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

Youth Work Event Poster

We are really excited to announce that we have a new event which you can now register for! The event is a half day workshop in colloboration with In Defence of Youth Work and Kings College London entitled: ‘Exploring young people, celebrity and entrepreneurialism: an event for youth workers and practitioners’  on 26 November 2015 10am-2pm (lunch included) at Kings College, University of London.

The event will explore the findings and resources from the CelebYouth project as well as exploring the work of In Defence of Youth Work and Tania de St Croix.

Guest Blog Post: Young people and the media…it’s complicated…

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

The relationship between young people and the media is always a complex one. On the one hand, their experiences as part of the audience are often extremely positive, with their media tastes and pleasures playing a big part in the whole construction of their own identity; on the other hand, they are often quite worried about the ways in which media might have a negative impact upon other young people (especially those younger than themselves). This ambiguity is further complicated by the ways in which they find themselves represented by the media- often demonised (‘hoodies, louts, scum’) or pathologised as victims (young girls and body image, the radicalization agenda).

Summer of talking: interviewing teaching professionals

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

During the Summer I interviewed a sociology teacher and an officer at the National Union of Teachers about our research findings and their views on young people and aspirations. This blog is focussed on what they had to say about our work and their own experiences in the field of teaching and education. Molly Rose is a sociology teacher at a school in Derbyshire. She did Sociology A-Level at school and loved it and felt it was a natural choice to study it at university. She has been teaching for 13 years at the same school. The officer at the NUT has chosen to remain anonymous. Based on the fact that the CelebYouth project looked at celebrity and celebrity culture we thought it would be interesting to find out what people in the teaching profession thought about celebs:

The art of application: theorising aspiration with habitus

Written by Heather. Posted in News

Talk of aspiration has been running through social policy in the United Kingdom and beyond for decades. Labour and Conservative politicians see it as a way to address inequality and to get working-class people to become more socially mobile. Prime Minister David Cameron called the UK an ‘aspiration nation’ and opposition leadership candidate Andy Burnham opened his campaign with his intention to make Labour ‘the party of aspiration’. In such pronouncements, aspiration remains alarmingly vague. In this guest post, Garth Stahl explores how we can use the theoretical tools of French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu to study the identity negotiations surrounding aspiration, and particularly the aspirations of working-class young men and their sense of value.

The best Jeremy Corbyn fandom and why it matters

Written by Heather. Posted in News

Corbyn - ObamaAt CelebYouth, we’re excited about Jeremy Corbyn’s rapid rise to position of runaway front runner in the UK Labour Party Leadership election. Our research on youth aspirations has documented the impact of austerity on young people’s lives  and Corbyn offers the promise of a mainstream challenge to that. However, we’ve also been interested in the transformation of Jeremy into a celebrity and the fandom that’s circulating about him. In this post Heather highlights some examples of this and discusses why it matters.

‘Until I had an insight into the project I was one of those disapproving people': Interview with Claire Nix

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

As part of our Knowledge Transfer work, Akile Ahmet is speaking to people who work with young people to see how they react to our findings. This post describes what Claire Nix an independent Careers Education Consultant  had to say. Claire works primarily in careers and employability, does training for careers advisors and is a member of Career England and a fellow of National Institute for Careers Education and Counselling. Claire initially found out about the project from a steering group member and attended our End of Award Event last July.

Interview with Pete Fraser

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

Peter Fraser has been has been involved in media education for 25 years, first as media studies teacher and for the past five years  freelance . He has been chief examiner for OCR Media studies A-level for 14 years and is currently working with The National Television Film school, as part of the British Film Institute‘s film academy, alongside chairing the Media Education Association that support teachers of the subject, and blogging regularly. Pete has been involved with the CelebYouth research since the beginning as a member of the Advisory Group. I this post Knowledge Transfer Fellow Akile Ahmet discusses young people, celebrity and our research with him.

Interview with Tania de St Croix

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

As part of our Knowledge Transfer programme Akile Ahmet is interviewing key people in the field of youth work, careers education, and schooling to help us make our findings relevant to their work. The first of her interviews was with Tania de St Croix. Tania is a youth worker and a postdoctoral research fellow at King’s College London. Her PhD explored grassroots youth work and this is affected by policy changes and how youth workers respond and resist some of the policy changes that have been happening. Tania is also a member and spokesperson for ‘In Defence of Youth Work’. In this post Akile describes what happened when she went along on Friday 19 June to talk with Tania and discuss some of the project findings.

Beyoncé, Rachel Dolezal and authenticity

Written by Heather. Posted in News

BeyonceDolezalWhen I turned on Twitter last Friday, my feed was filled with tweets reacting, usually with anger, often with humour, to the news that Rachel Dolezal had been exposed by her parents as a white woman passing as African American.

As details emerged, that she had attended Howard University, one of the US’s historically-black colleges, that she was president of her local chapter of the NAACP, that she was listed as a professor of Africana Studies at Eastern Washington University, the Twittersphere exploded. As I scrolled through these, I noticed how many tweets mentioned Beyoncé. In this post I reflect on what this tells us about race, gender and celebrity.

Are YouTubers changing how people come out?

Written by Akile Ahmet. Posted in News

The online world has become a huge platform for young people. In particular there is a growing successful community of what have come to be known as ‘YouTubers’, people who make their living through posting material on the video sharing site. Zoe Sugg, Tanya Burr, Pixi Woo, are among many beauty gurus who make YouTube videos about make-up, fashion and lifestyle. Both Tanya Burr and Zoe Sugg also have daily vlogs which show their ordinary lives as do the SacconeJoly’s a family – mum, dad, two young children – of ‘daily vloggers’, who invite you to ‘be part of their journey. What is apparent amongst all of these videos is the embedded taken-for-granted nature of heterosexuality, yet, as Akile Ahmet shows in this post, YouTube also provides spaces for other ways of being.


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