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Everyday Hyphens: Exploring Youth Identities with Methodological and Analytic Pluralism

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Taking seriously the call for methodological and analytic pluralism, we advance three key assumptions of theory and method: 1) young people develop “hyphenated selves” in shifting social and political contexts and in everyday circumstances; 2) pluralistic methods and research designs have the potential to capture identity movement across time and space; and 3) a pluralistic approach to analysis, specifically using a dialogical framework, allows hyphenated selves to be heard and interpreted in a way that neither pathologizes contradiction nor privileges coherence but presents a skillfully woven narrative about the self. To take up these questions, we draw upon the visual and textual narratives produced by three adolescents participating in a longitudinal, multimethod study designed to document social and academic engagement among urban youth.
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Keywords: adolescence; identity; narrative analysis; pluralistic approaches; qualitative research

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: New York University, New York, New York, USA 2: The Graduate Center, City University of New York, New York, New York, USA

Publication date: April 1, 2011

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