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Youth as a social construction and what is social policy SOCIOL 231 LECTURE 2
Critical Concepts One Due 07. 00 am Monday 27 th March 6 marks Write a 350 word review (excluding bibliography). Options Welfare Regimes Youth Policy ‘Third way’ politics The Investment State Neoliberal ideology Social Democratic ideology Conservative ideology Kaupapa Māori Feminist ideology
Referencing for this assignment; Direct and indirect Journal Article Chibber, P. K. & Majumdar, S. K. (1999) Foreign ownership and profitability: Property rights, control, and the performance of firms in Indian industry. Journal of Law & Economics, 42 (1), 209 -238. Simons, N. E. , Menzies, B. & Matthews, M. (2001) A Short Course in Soil and Rock Slope Engineering. London, Thomas Telford Publishing. Book Chapter Partridge, H. & Hallam, G. (2007) Evidence-based practice and information literacy. In: Lipu, S. , Williamson, K. & Lloyd, A. (eds. ) Exploring methods in information literacy research. Wagga, Australia, Centre for Information Studies Online Simons, N. E. , Menzies, B. & Matthews, M. (2001) A Short Course in Soil and Rock Slope Engineering. [Online] London, Thomas Telford Publishing. Available from: http: //www. myilibrary. com? ID=93941 [Accessed 18 th June 2008]. New Zealand Statistics (2016) Labour Market Statistics – June 2016 http: //www. stats. govt. nz/browse_for_stats/income-andwork/employment_and_unemployment/Labour. Market. Statistics_HOTPJun 16 qtr. aspx
Youth as a social construct ‘The dimensions of historical time and place must be considered in order to understand the restructuring of the youth phase. The coordinates of this period of life vary according to the economy and the educational and social policy of the state. . . Modern societies differ in their institutional arrangements concerning life transitions: education and training provisions, labour market regulations, exclusion mechanisms, social assistance rules, and to the extent to which there is an explicit youth policy’ (Heinz, 2009, in Furlong, A. (2009) Handbook of Youth Studies p 6) Youth as a period of transition to adulthood, has meaning only in relation to the specific circumstances of social, political and economic conditions. Once this is understood, it is possible to bring social conditions to the foreground and examine the significant differences between groups of young people as they engage with the processes which will take them closer to adulthood. For the concept of youth to have meaning its end point – adulthood – also has to have a clear meaning (Wyn and White, 1997, Rethinking Youth, Sage p 15) ‘The constructions of ‘youth’ during the modern age say as much about the builders as about their subjects, and the way that the concept of youth has been used clearly relates very closely to historical conditions and the social concerns of the times’ Jones, 2010 Youth p 4
What are the processes that contribute to the social construction of youth? Institutional – legal and administrative Policy – the reconfiguration of rights and responsibilities Capital and Global forces – the role of markets, production and consumption – marketing agencies Localism – culture, lifestyle, history – and the ecological context of what it means to be young in particular contexts The symbolic - media and representations of youth Academic disciplines – the construction the ‘youth problem’ The question of agency – and young people’s contribution?
Pre-Modern late 17 th early 18 th Century Working on the land/ farming and family employment Master and servant employment leaving home early Gendered and class education structured – poor get little schooling Youth as a short period (12 – 14) Early marriage for girls – later for boys Formation of guilds and youth groups with structures of regulation and control Strict control by magistrates and masters in local areas regulating behaviour Youth as producers (not consumers) Modern – mid 18 th to mid-19 th Century Late Modern mid-19 th – present day The creation of the social division of labour Emergence of industrial capitalism Girls transitions to marriage and gendered work The embedding of class divisions The growth of welfare and social rights – creation of youth labour Right to vote for 21 s Education for all – schooling until 13 (15 then 16) Creation of school to work transitions Separation of justice system – creation of juvenile justice – age of responsibility Implementation of reform and social improvement movement – Social workers and child protection law The emergence of youth as consumers Economic restructuring of youth labour market The emergence of the training state – post schooling Fragmented and diverse transitions into adulthood Fragmentation of family life/ structures – changing family form Growth of neoliberalism – ideas of ‘choice’ and private responsibility Growth of human capital and massification of education Removal of social rights in housing, unemployment benefit Paying for education Increased monitoring of the young Increased criminal laws i. e. antisocial behaviour/ curfews Youth as consumers
How is youth theorised in sociology? Long illustrious history – back beyond the Chicago School Strong relationship to mainstream sociology and its history Historical Influence of Marxism (Birmingham Cultural Centre), Functionalism (Parsons), Feminist theory (Mc. Robbie) – cultural studies (Bennett) and media studies (Cohen) and a strong relationship with criminology More recently social geographers, urban planners, political scientists have had major contributions to our understanding of youth Studied separate to Childhood studies – and tends to focus on those young people aged 13 + Critical engagement with ‘youth as a problem’ agenda – wanting to highlight the creative and innovative features of being young
Transitional studies What are the main transitions that young people go through and when is a young person an adult?
Transitions Studies Historically youth has been theorised as a state of transition being a movement from childhood to youth Transition studies have been a major feature of youth studies – transition from school to work and then transition into adulthood Dominated analysis – looking at ‘opportunity structures’ and blockages to transition More radical models showing the restructuring of pathways emerged and one’s that argue for a more dynamic reading of transitions – in that they are either extended, fragmented or broken The idea of youth as a stage of ‘becoming’
Criticisms of transition studies [the transitions approach is] a limited research paradigm focused on ‘transitions’ as a rite of passage between developmental stages of psychology maturity and immaturity, complemented by a sociological transition narrowly restricted to (vocational) maturity and (nuclear) family formation (Cohen and Ainley, 2000 p 80) ‘The impact of these assumptions on our understanding of young people is far reaching. For example, the assumption of normative processes of transition has produced a near consensus among youth researchers that young people’s transitions are faulty…These characterisations all rest on the assumptions that (a) there exists a normative transitional process, from which young people deviate; (b) youth is a linear process or position on a life-course; and (c) culture, economy and politics simply add ‘flavour’ or context to the development process, ’ (Wyn and Woodman, 2006 p 498)
Generation Theory German sociologist Karl Mannheim The importance of historical circumstances and generational connections Youth as a formative period of life – making ‘fresh’ contacts with the world The young are either seen as innovators - the drivers of social change The moulding power of new situations and circumstances An objective category of social analysis The work of Wyn and Woodman (to follow)
Generational Studies and the new adulthood: Johanna Wyn and Dan Woodman The concept of a new adulthood assumes a generational framework. It signals the emergence of significant new priorities and subjectivities that are anchored in the political and material conditions of young people's lives. It is suggested that these subjectivities are not simply ‘transitional’ (or ‘age effects’), and implies that a generational shift had occurred. Changes in labour markets, in the relationship between education and employment and in workplace relations, and in the actions of the state, have altered the significance of the traditional ‘markers’ of adult status in industrialised countries. These changes have had effects across the generations, but with specific effects for the post-1970 generation because of their particular positioning in the network of social relations and because they have known no other world (Wyn and Woodman, 2006 p 500)
Generations discussion in NZ http: //www. stuff. co. nz/business/money/69276333/millennials-and-their-money http: //www. nzherald. co. nz/nz/news/article. cfm? c_id=1&objectid=11813545 http: //www. stuff. co. nz/national/politics/90189060/baby-boomers-v-millennials-what-we-know-about-the-generation-gap http: //theconversation. com/millennials-in-the-workplace-not-as-different-as-youthink-74107 http: //theconversation. com/the-smashed-avo-debate-misses-inequality-withingenerations-70475
Seminar Question (1) Are the baby boomers taking away the future of the Millennials?
What is Social Policy? https: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=Ccff_50 d. FP 4
Cheyne, O’Brien and Belgrave – Social Policy in Aotearoa New Zealand (2005) The study of social policy is concerned with the ways in which the distribution of opportunities and resources available in society influence well-being. Study of social policy is not just a detached academic pursuit, but carries with it a normative component incorporating different theoretical traditions about what constitutes well-being and how the institutions of society should be used to promote it (p 1)
Duncan (2007) Society and Politics: New Zealand Social Policy But policy is inherently political: that is, it’s a result of the competition between diverse interest groups who use society’s power structures to gain or maintain control over society’s resources for the pursuit of goals that they value or desire’ (P 5) ‘…political ideologies are to be seen as broad ‘families’ of philosophical ideas and ethical values about the nature, and the remedies for, social and economic problems’ (p 7)
Mc. Clelland Smyth – Social Policy in Australia 2013 (third edition) Some pivotal ideas (or concepts) in social policy include need, desert, rights social justice and efficiency. But the interpretation of these ideas, and the value placed on them, depends on broader frameworks and ideologies about what works (that is, theories about how humans and societies behave and develop) and what ought to be (key values) p 19
Mc. Clelland Smyth – Social Policy in Australia (2013) Third Edition ‘Social polices can vary in detail and formality. They can be formal statements with substantial detail about purpose and proposed action, a set of related formal statements, statements of general intention or purpose, and statements where values are articulated or informal agreements of intent that are not necessarily made explicit (p 7)’
Summery Distribution of opportunities and resources in a given society – although how this happens is decided through competition of ideas – social policy is intrinsically political Aims to promote well being of a societies members Is concerned with the role and actions of the state and other institutions Implies some kind of action or at the very least an intention to act. . although not always explicit Embedded with values, beliefs (‘theories’) of how humans and societies behave and develop – usually around concepts such as ‘needs’ ‘wants’ ’desires’ and ‘justice’- which have significant contribution to how policies are constructed and enacted Is ideologically driven…. . and is embedded with issues of power
Different ideologies that can (and do) operate to structure social Policy Different ideologies that have driven government social policy: The Liberal (and Classical liberalism) ideology The conservative ideology The social democratic ideology Feminist Anti Racist and Māori approaches Contemporary developments Neoliberalism The ‘third way’ and the social development model The investment state’
The liberal (including Classical liberalism) ideology Individuals as free, rational and moral beings worthy of equal respect The centralising of liberty as a universal value applicable to all human beings Belief in the free market and private property and limited state State should not interfere with individuals liberty and rights other than to protect others from harm and safeguard freedom Variations within – ‘classical liberalism’, ‘social liberalism’ and more recently neo-liberalism’ Major influence in setting up approaches to welfare in 19 th century UK and other parts of the empire - since 1980 s Thatcherism, Reagonism and Rodgernomics
The Conservative Ideology Sees human nature as inherently imperfect and need for state involvement Less focus on individual freedom and more on authority, status and social cohesion – as regulator Still sees state playing less of a role especially in welfare provision Strong focus on tradition and status quo Belief in the role of the family as core especially in acting as a moral compass Also sees private property as a right and approves of hierarchy and inequality – believing in natural selection and that people are born / or are naturally unequal Shaped ‘one nation’ conservativism in the UK and welfare states in Germany and France after the war
The Social Democratic Ideology Strong influence from Marxism Views human nature as optimistic view of human nature as cooperative and creative Strong belief in the value and principle of social equality and social justice and community Sees capitalism as fundamentally ‘bad’ in it creates inequality, exploitation, social divisions (class) and competitive individualism towards materialism Sees state ownership of means of production and distribution – which aims to liberate/ free individuals. Opposed to private provision and sees a core role of state in providing welfare Scandinavian countries are seen as strongly influenced by this approach although the Soviet bloc countries and other ‘communist’ countries such as Cuba which are seen as good historical examples.
Feminist ideology Society is inherently built upon sexual and gender discrimination – where men are prioritised over women This approach argues for providing a gendered analysis of society uncovering the differences and inequalities between the genders Critical of other approaches for failure to include such an analysis Need to recognise that a separation between ‘public’ and ‘private’ spheres exists in mainstream approaches to understanding society These inequalities are perpetuated by a welfare state that fails to recognise the caring roles women undertake in the family or the low pay they receive as corer workers in the welfare state Number of different approaches within – liberal feminist/ radical feminist and socialist feminist – but all agree that the system is unfair to women and needs to be changed
Anti-racist and Māori approaches to Social Policy Anti racist theory argues that racism is embedded and inherent in every structure and instruction in society The state is seen to perpetuating racial stereo types and is unwilling to tackle racial inequality Holds a strong position that ‘tinkering with the state’ will do little to change things – need to develop own structures and institutions In New Zealand - Kaupapa Māori theory – a conceptualisation of Māori Knowledge as a way of informing research and practice – central feature is tino rangatiratanga – or Māori rights to self determination and autonomy and the use of the Treaty of Waitangi framework Mana wāhine theory – affirms Māori women within Māori society - dedicated to the affirmation of Māori women within Māori society, within whānau, hapū and iwi. It is a theoretical framework that, like Kaupapa Māori theory, is based within mātauranga Māori and is committed to the articulation of Māori women's ways of knowing the world For example Whānau Ora policy – multi disciplinary/ agency approach to providing wrap around services by and for Māori – aims to empower whānau in meeting the needs of Māori http: //www. waipareira. com/strategic
Neo liberalism Reaction against conservativism and the social democratic influence in post war era Emerged in the 1980 s – had major influence on New Zealand – and is having a major influence throughout the crisis and the great recession – shaping what we mean by austerity Strong emphasis on free markets, deregulation of labour , removal of welfare state – emphasis is on freeing individual to express their needs and desires in the market place It is both an economic philosophy and moral – having a ‘social wing’ – that sees a role for government in installing and normalising the belief in individualism and self reliance - and tackling the ‘dependency’ and reliance of individuals on welfare and the state. https: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=O 1 Yi. Oj 7 -TDo https: //www. youtube. com/watch? v=KW 5 FRu. Mk. Q 6 g
The ‘third way’ and social development model Pragmatic approach – aims at bridging the gap between left and right and create a more socially responsible way to running the country Birth in UK (although some Australians argue its roots in the Australian politics of the 1990 s) Influential in a wide range of countries (UK, US, Australia, Canada and New Zealand) Attempts to reconcile the liberty and freedom of the market with equality and community Opposed to top down view of Social democratic and inequality and ‘unfettered capitalism’ – tackle these by focusing on – civic responsibility (and corporate), earned rights, fairness and individual autonomy – not opposed to state intervention BUT individuals have to earn the rights and benefits Therefore argues for ‘no rights without responsibility’ model of welfare – for example paid work and education as core responsibilities of individual The importance of community – communitarianism Family as main provider of welfare but recognises the importance of state welfare as a ‘safety net’ Belief in a market organised society – not opposed to markets having a central role in distribution of societies goods and resources or of private sector https: //youtu. be/c 61 pm. Ox. Rl. Ts
The ‘enabling’ state’ and the ‘investment’ state At heart of third way approach is the shift in how the state should operate – from protection to the investment or enabling state Provides a ‘trampoline’ rather than a safety net – and is a place to help people to help themselves and to exercise responsibility It aims to be ‘active’ encouraging independence (not dependence) enterprise and initiative It sees the state investing in human capital and the prioritising of education and training over social security
The Investment State An ‘investment approach’ to the provision of social services is sometimes described as ‘spending now to reduce future costs’ It is what is called an ‘actuarial approach’ – that calculate a measure of future fiscal liability which is then used for evaluation of ‘success’ and for policy purposes Uses 2 decades of social security records and various modelling techniques to project the cost of each beneficiary’s future use of benefits and then allocate spending accordingly (cost benefit analysis)to certain groups It is claimed that getting people into work (and stay) will have a lower future welfare cost and better social outcomes Issues: solely a fiscal model of liability/ only looks at costs to government/depends on administrative data and does not recognise the more dynamic nature of people’s trajectories/ danger of stigmatizing/ better outcomes if in employment?
Seminar Question (2) How do different perspectives understand the role of social policy? How might we understand analysis social policy?
Key Question What have been the main ideological influences in the development of Social Policy in New Zealand?
New Zealand Social Policy The Early beginnings The Creation of the Welfare State 1938 Post War and the interventionist state The arrival of Neoliberalism 1984 Neoliberalism 1990 s – 2008 National government – 2008 until present day Social Policy and Maori