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The Cultural Role of Stigmatized Youth Groups: The Case of the Partille Johnnys of Sweden
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for Fashion Studies.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for Fashion Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5447-3661
2011 (English)In: Research in Consumer Behavior / [ed] Russell W. Belk, Kent Grayson, Albert M. Muñiz, Hope Jensen Schau, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2011, Vol. 13, 127-143 p.Chapter in book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose: This paper aims to contribute to the theoretical domain of identity construction by discussing an aspect of identity-not, i.e. how identity is largely formed by delimitations of what one does not identify with. We do this by analyzing the reactions of mainstream youth to the stylistic expressions of one particular youth group—the so-called Partille Johnnys (PJs) of Sweden—who in certain ways breaks with conventions of how to relate to the globally available canon of culturally sanctioned styles which places them in a position as stigmatized. The purpose of the paper is to further the understanding of how stigma gets orchestrated in consumer culture and what cultural role stigmatized groups might play.

Methodology: The empirical material for this paper has been collected using various qualitative research techniques. Initially the phenomenon was discovered and explored during ethnographic observations and interviews. In addition online research was carried out.

Findings: The PJ style functions as a mirror for reflecting on transgressions of what is considered normal in terms of style and bodily practices for contemporary Swedish youth. Our conclusion suggests that the cultural function of the stigmatized group PJ is to serve as a reminder of what the mainstream is not.

Originality/value of paper: A phenomenon previously not studied, part of the value lies in the ethnographic descriptions capturing the PJ phenomenon. With these empirical descriptions we wish to add to discussions of how the stigmatized groups gets orchestrated as well as the role that stigmatized groups can play at a cultural level. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2011. Vol. 13, 127-143 p.
, Research in Consumer Behavior, ISSN 0885-2111 ; 13
Keyword [en]
Mainstream, Online Research, Stigma, Style, Subculture, Youth
National Category
Business Administration Cultural Studies
Research subject
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-66806DOI: 10.1108/S0885-2111(2011)0000013011ISBN: 978-1-78052-116-9ISBN: 978-1-78052-117-6OAI: diva2:468627
Available from: 2011-12-21 Created: 2011-12-21 Last updated: 2016-09-06Bibliographically approved

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