• Frederik Thomsen
4. term, Social Work, Master (Master Programme)
This thesis examines the process of subjectification of young cash benefit receivers in the implementation of the social assistance reform from 2014.

The uncovering hereof consists more concretely of a twofold analysis. The first part of the analysis seeks to analyse the different queries and specific forms of knowledge that, in the political debate of employment, is connected to the young receivers of cash benefits’ behaviour and identity and thereby constitute the groups political articulated possibilities of identification. The second part of the analysis will investigate how the different subjects problematized nature are embedded in the social assistance reform’s new governing instruments and how they influence on the room for manoeuvre from which position the young receivers’ identity are believed to take up a legitimate position in the social sphere of society.

The analysis is formed by the so-called governmentality perspective, which theoretical fundament is attached to the French philosopher Michel Foucaults insight in the interaction between power, knowledge and subjectivity. The analysis takes its outset in a collected archive of documents consisting of articles from daily papers together with centrally politically framed instructions to the employment policy’s institutional practise. On behalf of the analysis, this thesis conclude that the young receivers of cash benefits generally are classified as passive, which basically is problematized with reference to an elevated ideal about the active citizen. The problematic conception of the young receivers is fed by different underlying mentalities, which in this thesis, through the lens of Foucault, are categorized as respectively disciplinary and pastoral.

Furthermore, this thesis point out how the employment policy’s glorification of the active citizen’s productive and self-fulfilled marker of identity concretely is embedded in a line of the social assistance reform’s new governing instruments. More precisely, it is shown how the the social assistance reform, by its use of techniques such as categorization, “nyttejob” and education prompt in practice format the legitimate room of manoeuvre for the young’s display of identity. It is concluded that the young receivers of cash benefit, through the social assistance reform, are endeavoured to transform towards political promoted active ideals for identity, which current employment policy rationales in practice provide for identification. As such, the social assistance reform constitute a narrow room of act in its attempt to regulate the young receivers conceived problematic passivity in favour of an active conduct of life characterized by self-realization, self-development and productivity, which thereby shape, restrict and influence on the perception of the young subjects.
Publication date1 Aug 2016
Number of pages94
ID: 237932167