This text offers a critique of mainstream conceptions of youth, the programmes and strategies designed for "at risk" young people, and policy development in youth affairs. The authors challenge conventional wisdoms, providing a systematic overview of the major perspectives in youth studies. They demonstrate how the concept of youth involves a tension between the social significance of age and the significance of other social divisions. Using examples from the UK, Europe, Australia and the US, the book examines debates surrounding youth and economy, youth development, youth subcultures, youth transitions and youth marginalization. It calls for greater sensitivity to the complexities of youth and greater emphasis on democracy and equality in dealing with the problems experienced by young people in a rapidly changing world.
`Rethinking Youth should prove useful for practitioners as well as academic researchers. It was also a welcome change to see a detailed discussion of social relations around ethnicity. "race" and class from the perspective of Australian society, as well as the more usual and dominant focus on Britain and the USA' - Sociological Research Online
`This is a well written book which introduces several new theoretical ideas for the analysis of `youth' as a life stage. The authors promote refreshing ideas about how youth should be reconceptualized and how class should not be ignored in youth research. I think Wyn and White put forward a strong case for the reintroduction of class analysis into youth research and also for more consideration of the social processes which affect young people. I would suggest that the book should be read by anyone working in the youth field as there are some stimulating new ideas on how youth research can progress. Rethinking Youth will provide many readers with food for thought on how the ideas put forward by Wyn and White can be expanded upon and also incorporated into future empirical youth research projects' - Journal of Youth Studies