Chapter

Places to go, things to do and people to see: space and activity in english youth work policy

Richard Davies

in Critical Geographies of Childhood and Youth

Published by Policy Press

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9781847428462
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447307259 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781847428462.003.0005
Places to go, things to do and people to see: space and activity in english youth work policy

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The chapter explores the development of youth work policy over a period of significant change under the 1997–2010 Labour governments. As a devolved activity, the English policy context has become increasing distinct from the other three UK jurisdictions. The underlying thesis presented is that social geographical perspectives offer, by drawing attention to the spatial-temporal dimension of the policy landscape, new insights into policy and practice. I argue that the spatial-temporal aspects inherent in recent policies have not been helpful for youth work. Drawing on MacIntyre's account of a ‘social practice’, I argue that youth work policy has been led astray into forming distinct spaces for young people. What is required is a greater focus on a range of institutions that transcend space. Such Institutions offer young people a context within which to explore what is meant by, and how to pursue, a life worth living.

Keywords: Youth work; England; Labour government; Policy; Social practices; Spatial-temporal dimensions

Chapter.  6264 words. 

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