The dark side of modernity

Student thesis: Master Thesis and HD Thesis

  • Camilla Liane Blohm Nielsen
4. term, Social Work, Master (Master Programme)
This thesis directs a critical theoretical look at the negative consequences modernity's way of life can have on children's well-being. With a firm belief that it is the children's own views and perspectives on their everyday lives, that will be the most important tool to examine how the characteristics of modernity have reached the sphere of childhood, the thesis's own data collection is based on interviews with children from 5th – 10th grade in secondary school. True to the inductive approach of the thesis, it is the data collection's findings, that have led to which theoretical perspectives are suited and therefore selected in order to understand, lift and nuance the concerns and struggles, which are part of children's life in modernity. In this regard Hartmut Rosa's contribution to critical theory, especially his thoughts on acceleration and alienation, is particularly comparable with the findings in the thesis's data collection. In the interviews, when the children tell about their everyday lives and thereby introduce us to their thoughts and concerns, there is no doubt that their views and perspectives are highly comparable with a theoretical framework which, like Rosa's, deals with the temporal patterns of modernity and, not least, modern man's struggle to keep up with the pace of life. Just as the interviews have had a decisive impact on the thesis's primary theory selection, the interviews have been crucial for the thesis's more specific focus on firstly children's social life and friendships in modernity, and secondly on children's relationship to school, education and future career. Two areas where the data collection's findings show, that children in particular are affected by demands and expectations, and also two areas that to a great extent contribute to concerns challenging children's peace of mind – a term that will frame the normative ideal throughout the thesis.
Publication date7 Apr 2022
Number of pages67
ID: 467135981