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Normalised dislocation and new subjectivities in post-16 markets for education and work

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  • Hm Sociology
  • Economics
  • Linguistics


This article argues that the prevailing discourses of transitions and of social exclusion are no longer adequate to describe or explain the experiences of a substantial minority of young people. Reporting on a study of 800 16–19-year-olds, it is argued that an extensively diversified market in post-16 options produces instability and dislocation. Some young people are able to normalize these experiences of serial short-life engagements with courses and jobs into emergent new subjectivities, constructed around highly interdependent modes of studentship, employment and consumption. For others (the poorest students, those with special needs, some racialized groups) these subjectivities are not available

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