This is a collaborative research project in which Dr. Helen Manchester will work with RiO (http://realideas.org/) and a wide range of cultural and community organisations across the city of Bristol who work with young people. The project’s overarching objectives are: to build a better understanding of young people’s understanding of cultural value; and to use these insights to inform the design and provision of cultural and creative activities across a city. Findings will then be used to open up robust, research led national discussions on young people and cultural value.
This project will explore young people’s experiences and analyses of cultural value today in order to inform contemporary discussion of cultural value. In so doing, it will draw on recent generational and digital cultural analyses of youth culture as well as the longstanding theorisation of ‘youth cultures’ from cultural studies, sociology and youth geographies. In particular, it draws on recent studies that have highlighted the value in looking across different contexts in order to understand the influences on and effects of cultural affiliations on young peoples’ lives, identities and development.
The typical research questions the project will address are:
How do young people understand cultural value today? For example, what are the criteria they use to construct and create judgements of value for everyday activities and for participation in more formalised cultural activities?
What are the similarities and differences between these contemporary accounts and historical accounts of ‘youth culture’? Are there distinctive contemporary conceptions of cultural value emerging amongst young people?
How are contemporary youth conceptions of cultural value informed by parents, peer groups, wider cultural contexts?
How do those judgments and factors differ between different groups within generations?
What do generational accounts add to the debate about cultural value? How does generation disrupt current conceptions?