Holt, L. (2009) Youth/youth cultures. In: Kitchin, R. and Thrift, N. (eds.) International Encyclopedia of Human Geography. Elsevier Science, pp. 283-289. ISBN 0080449115
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Youth is an embodied social construct attached to people who are too young to be classified as fully adult, and yet older than children. It is a term whose meaning is sociospatially specific and shifting. Youth and young people are often perceived as troubling to society, and the earliest studies of youth were tied to attempts to control unruly young people. Studies of youth cultures often utilized ethnographic research to explore the perspectives of young people. Early youth cultural studies inadvertently reproduced some dominant representations of youth, as male and troubling to society, by focusing upon subcultural groupings, such as Punks and Mods, and by excluding accounts of those other than white, heterosexual males. Recent studies have moved beyond these accounts to consider how youth cultures are porous, differentiated rather than holistic, connected to broader sociospatial processes, and can reproduce powerful social relationships, such as gender, along with teasing out how youth cultures are played out differently in various geographical contexts.
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