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The Agency of Children in Street Situations

  • Daniel Stoecklin
Chapter
Part of the Children’s Well-Being: Indicators and Research book series (CHIR, volume 21)

Abstract

The dominant view holds that agency refers to the capacity of actors to influence the ways in which society functions, and structure refers to the social barriers that constrain this capacity to influence. Inspired by the structuration theory (Giddens 1979, 1984), introducing the notion of ‘duality of the structure’, a new framework is proposed whereby social practices are mediated by « thinking horizons » or « objects » – activities, relationships, values, images of self, and motivations – that preside over individual choices and reflexive monitoring. There are consequently five modes of action, or visible forms of the practical arrangement of daily life: entrepreneurial, relational, moral, identitary, and motivational. These modes of action are linked together and it is through this « structure of pertinences » that children give meaning to their situation on the street and develop their agency. Meanwhile, the transformability of situated agency strongly depends on the social representations of childhood in a given context.

Keywords

Agency Structure Objects Thinking horizons Modes of action Pertinences Transformability Social representations 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel Stoecklin
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Children’s Right StudiesUniversity of GenevaBramois/SionSwitzerland

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