At the Margins: The Persistent Inequalities of Youth, Place and Class

Robert MacDonald

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


This chapter looks back on three studies, completed over forty years, to consider change and continuity in the experiences of young people growing up in rural and marginalised localities in the North of England. It also reflects briefly on some of the continuities and repetitions in sociological thinking about young people and youth transitions. All three studies showed how place makes immediate ‘the structure of economic opportunities’ for young people, how it generates different degrees of inclusion and exclusion, and how it contours local class identities that tell you ‘who you are’ and ‘what you can do’. Young people’s identities and transitions have undoubtedly become less fixed under the pressures and opportunities of globalisation. Nevertheless, place still operates in powerful, complex and multiple ways, and at different scales, in shaping young people’s attachments, aspirations and future possibilities. This may be particularly true for young people ‘at the margins’.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationYouth Beyond the City
Subtitle of host publicationThinking from the Margins
EditorsDavid Farrugia, Signe Ravn
Place of PublicationBristol
PublisherPolicy Press
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781529212051
ISBN (Print)9781529212044
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2022


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