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Once were young: reflexive hindsight and the problem of teen parents

Kamp, Annelies and Kelly, Peter (2014) Once were young: reflexive hindsight and the problem of teen parents. Journal of Youth Studies, 17 (7). pp. 887-900. ISSN 1469-9680

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Adults are the ones who do the social science that takes young people as its object. In this paper, we draw on empirical research, social theory, our background in Youth Studies and, for one of us, experiential knowledge as a ‘former’ teenage parent to trouble the practice of social science, in general, and Youth Studies, in particular. Using teenage pregnancy and parenting as a lens, the paper explores what it might mean to work at/on the limits of reflexive hindsight. We suggest that reflexive hindsight offers a particular, limited intervention into the knowledge practices of social science; one that makes explicit and plays with the ambivalence and ambiguity, even irony, of adult social scientists – who once were young – taking the behaviours and dispositions, the hopes, the fears and aspirations, the past, present and futures of young people as their objects

Item Type:Article (Published)
Additional Information:
Uncontrolled Keywords:methodology; teenage parents; reflexive hindsight; critique; ambivalence
Subjects:Social Sciences > Sociology
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Science > School of Education Studies
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
Official URL:
Copyright Information:This is an electronic version of an article published in Journal of Youth Studies 17(7) pp 887-900. Journal of Youth Studies is available online at:
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:19788
Deposited On:12 Aug 2014 11:23 by Annelies Kamp. Last Modified 25 Nov 2014 01:02

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