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  • Author or Editor: Signe Ravn x
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The concluding chapter draws together the themes of the book and offers new paths forward for narrative research in new times. It summarises and demonstrates how the chapters have each brought new interdisciplinary dimensions to the key questions of the book around the ethics of storytelling, voice, power and representation. The closing discussion opens up avenues for future analysis primarily around the question of how scholars can bring critical perspectives to the promise of stories, without becoming too cynical about the power of narrating lived experience. It identifies further issues around time and temporality, the role of the listener, authority and tellability that call for the expertise of narrative scholars and socially engaged storytellers in our era.

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Narrative Research Now addresses timely concerns about the politics of representation and the ethics of storytelling; topics that are crucial to narrative research and to broader audiences interested in the power of stories. In a time of contested realities and a renewed focus on the power of personal stories, narrative research is as relevant as ever. But ironically it is sometimes seen as a naive approach that champions people’s testimonies at all costs. The idea that stories and storytelling matter is widely accepted, yet critical engagement with such stories remains rare. In part, this is because narrative research has not always been up to the task of unpacking issues of power and representation. Indeed, while narrative has been praised for ‘giving voice’ and highlighting how individuals make sense of the social world, critics are starting to question which voices are being heard, or allowed to speak, and which experiences are made to count. Narrative Research Now picks up on these questions as it seeks to scrutinise the continued value of narrative and suggest a new agenda for narrative research in contemporary times. The book is arranged into three cross-cutting themes that reflect significant points of tension in the field – institutional authority and counter-stories; tellable and untellable stories; and the ethics of representation. With these themes, the chapters take on important concerns such as an attention to the ethics, power dynamics, and the politics of storytelling in a social world.

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Narrative Research Now addresses timely concerns about the politics of representation and the ethics of storytelling; topics that are crucial to narrative research and to broader audiences interested in the power of stories. In a time of contested realities and a renewed focus on the power of personal stories, narrative research is as relevant as ever. But ironically it is sometimes seen as a naive approach that champions people’s testimonies at all costs. The idea that stories and storytelling matter is widely accepted, yet critical engagement with such stories remains rare. In part, this is because narrative research has not always been up to the task of unpacking issues of power and representation. Indeed, while narrative has been praised for ‘giving voice’ and highlighting how individuals make sense of the social world, critics are starting to question which voices are being heard, or allowed to speak, and which experiences are made to count. Narrative Research Now picks up on these questions as it seeks to scrutinise the continued value of narrative and suggest a new agenda for narrative research in contemporary times. The book is arranged into three cross-cutting themes that reflect significant points of tension in the field – institutional authority and counter-stories; tellable and untellable stories; and the ethics of representation. With these themes, the chapters take on important concerns such as an attention to the ethics, power dynamics, and the politics of storytelling in a social world.

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Narrative Research Now addresses timely concerns about the politics of representation and the ethics of storytelling; topics that are crucial to narrative research and to broader audiences interested in the power of stories. In a time of contested realities and a renewed focus on the power of personal stories, narrative research is as relevant as ever. But ironically it is sometimes seen as a naive approach that champions people’s testimonies at all costs. The idea that stories and storytelling matter is widely accepted, yet critical engagement with such stories remains rare. In part, this is because narrative research has not always been up to the task of unpacking issues of power and representation. Indeed, while narrative has been praised for ‘giving voice’ and highlighting how individuals make sense of the social world, critics are starting to question which voices are being heard, or allowed to speak, and which experiences are made to count. Narrative Research Now picks up on these questions as it seeks to scrutinise the continued value of narrative and suggest a new agenda for narrative research in contemporary times. The book is arranged into three cross-cutting themes that reflect significant points of tension in the field – institutional authority and counter-stories; tellable and untellable stories; and the ethics of representation. With these themes, the chapters take on important concerns such as an attention to the ethics, power dynamics, and the politics of storytelling in a social world.

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Critical Perspectives on the Promise of Stories

At a time of contested realities and a renewed focus on the power of personal stories, narrative research is as relevant as ever. But while it has been praised for ‘giving voice’ to individuals and highlighting how they make sense of the social world, critics are starting to question which voices are being heard, or allowed to speak, and which experiences are made to count.

Supported by the editors’ popular podcast Narrative Now, this interdisciplinary volume addresses timely concerns about representation, power, voice, and the ethics of storytelling.

Contributors explore the capacities and limitations of narrative research, and map out new directions for the field while honouring its legacy.

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Thinking from the Margins
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Chapter 10 is available Open Access under CC-BY-NC-ND licence.

This interdisciplinary collection charts the experiences of young people in places of spatial marginality around the world, dismantling the privileging of urban youth, urban locations and urban ways of life in youth studies and beyond.

Expert authors investigate different dimensions of spatiality including citizenship, materiality and belonging, and develop new understandings of the complex relationships between place, history, politics and education. From Australia to India, Myanmar to Sweden, and the UK to Central America, international examples from both the Global South and North help to illuminate wider issues of intergenerational change, social mobility and identity.

By exploring young lives beyond city, this book establishes different ways of thinking from a position of spatial marginality.

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The purpose of this book is to situate the place beyond the city as an epistemological vantage point for researching youth. In this introductory chapter we interrogate the spatial and epistemological boundaries that shape current thinking about young people, and examine the concept of the margins as a position from which to create theory. Large urban centres and ‘global cities’ operate as taken for granted vantage points for understanding youth in late modernity, but the concept of the margins as we develop it here goes beyond this to explore the forms of spatial marginality existing both between and within rural and urban spaces. With this in mind, this chapter sketches the book’s agenda across four domains, including inequalities, materialities, identities and temporalities. In the process, we approach the space beyond the city not merely as a margin, but as a theoretically productive and unique position for thinking about the future of youth research.

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The purpose of this book is to situate the place beyond the city as an epistemological vantage point for researching youth. Existing frameworks about young people privilege large urban centres or ‘global cities’, and create forms of marginality that are at once spatial and epistemological. This book interrogates and moves beyond theses boundaries, turning the margins into a unique position for understanding youth and examining forms of difference within and between urban and rural spaces. The book is organised into four sections: inequalities, focusing on the structural and cultural divisions shaping the margins; materialities, focusing on sensory embodiment and the lived environment; identities, focusing on place attachment and mobility; and temporalities, focusing on the history of place and the role of temporality in shaping identities and modes of place attachment. Across the book we develop this agenda through international contributions, with chapters across the global north and the global south, and including East and South-East Asia, Northern and Western Europe, and Australia. The margins therefore emerge as a complex topography of identities, modes of embodiment and processes of social change that cross spatial and epistemological divisions.

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The purpose of this book is to situate the place beyond the city as an epistemological vantage point for researching youth. Existing frameworks about young people privilege large urban centres or ‘global cities’, and create forms of marginality that are at once spatial and epistemological. This book interrogates and moves beyond theses boundaries, turning the margins into a unique position for understanding youth and examining forms of difference within and between urban and rural spaces. The book is organised into four sections: inequalities, focusing on the structural and cultural divisions shaping the margins; materialities, focusing on sensory embodiment and the lived environment; identities, focusing on place attachment and mobility; and temporalities, focusing on the history of place and the role of temporality in shaping identities and modes of place attachment. Across the book we develop this agenda through international contributions, with chapters across the global north and the global south, and including East and South-East Asia, Northern and Western Europe, and Australia. The margins therefore emerge as a complex topography of identities, modes of embodiment and processes of social change that cross spatial and epistemological divisions.

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The purpose of this book is to situate the place beyond the city as an epistemological vantage point for researching youth. Existing frameworks about young people privilege large urban centres or ‘global cities’, and create forms of marginality that are at once spatial and epistemological. This book interrogates and moves beyond theses boundaries, turning the margins into a unique position for understanding youth and examining forms of difference within and between urban and rural spaces. The book is organised into four sections: inequalities, focusing on the structural and cultural divisions shaping the margins; materialities, focusing on sensory embodiment and the lived environment; identities, focusing on place attachment and mobility; and temporalities, focusing on the history of place and the role of temporality in shaping identities and modes of place attachment. Across the book we develop this agenda through international contributions, with chapters across the global north and the global south, and including East and South-East Asia, Northern and Western Europe, and Australia. The margins therefore emerge as a complex topography of identities, modes of embodiment and processes of social change that cross spatial and epistemological divisions.

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