Project Y is a platform for critical and creative thinking about current social, cultural and political issues, seen from the perspective of youth, youth cultures, and youthful agency. Y stands for Youth, the so-called Generation Y, as well as for questioning the structural positioning and everyday struggles of youth and the cultural practices young people develop: Why?!
Project Y is dedicated to exploring the agency of youth in its manifold expressions. Our mission is to create a grounded understanding of the actual life worlds of youth and actual possibilities of youthful agency. Our mission is to debunk myths surrounding youth, to break free from thinking in boxes, and to build conceptual bridges to allow for innovation. We believe that knowledge is not just power, knowledge is agency.
Our goal is to stimulate new thinking about youth, new thinking about the position and practices of youth in society, and thus new thinking about society. Our vision is that such new thinking can have an impact on society. Our vision is that society needs the perspective of youth in order to fulfill its human potential – a perspective grounded in appreciation for subjectivity, diversity, and agency as a precondition for progress in thinking and being. Following the words of Frank Zappa, our motto is that without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.
Project Y offers a platform for student research papers, most of them written for Youth Cultures in a Transnational Context at the University of Amsterdam’s Interdisciplinary Social Sciences program (ASW). These papers are based on ethnographic research, in-depth interviews, literature study, some soul-searching and personal reflection. They address social, cultural, political and personal issues that concern us all, not just youth, but certainly do so from a youthful point of view that seeks to highlight the often neglected subjectivity, diversity, and agency in social phenomena. Thereby they break new ground, offer fresh perspectives, and suggest new areas and avenues of social investigation. While bridging the divide between social scientific discourse and public interest, above all they offer very interesting and relevant stories that need to be published.
Besides these research papers, Project Y also welcomes relevant contributions from other students, scholars, critical and creative thinkers or artists concerned with youth cultures and youthful agency. Our goal is to build a global community around this subject, in order to produce true innovation and progress in the way we study and appreciate the diversity in youth cultures and youthful agency.
New content will regularly be posted. In the meantime, follow and like us on the Project Y Facebook page for the latest updates and a daily feed of cool and interesting links. Also check our parent website, ASW Journal, the online journal of the Department of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, which has great theses and blog posts by lecturers, students, and alumni. Thanks for your interest!
Contact: Yatun Sastramidjaja (Y.Sastramidjaja@uva.nl), Coordinator and Lecturer Global Youth Studies at the University of Amsterdam
Logo and cover illustration by Marte Ydema