Representing a ‘good family’ : middle-class teenagers’ food, health and activity discourses

Mei-Li Roberts, Wendy J. Wills, Julia Lawton, Kathryn Backett-Milburn, Donna MacKinnon

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Abstract

This paper draws on data from a qualitative study in Scotland which focuses on middle class teenagers (aged 13-15 years) with a range of BMIs. The paper examines the representation of a ‘good family’ through looking at young people’s discourses surrounding food, health and activity practices. For example, young people’s discussions regarding family meals are often centred around the importance of the family eating together, sitting at a table and eating a ‘balanced’ diet. Contradictions between the presentation of what young people believe constitutes a ‘good’ family and their actual family practices will also be explored. For instance, although young people emphasise the importance of a ‘good’ family sitting at the table and eating together, in practice, this may only occur occasionally. Finally, we will examine the way in which being a ‘healthy’ adolescent in a ‘healthy’ family is equated with being a ‘good’ or ‘moral’ individual, for example, by comparison with other families/adolescents.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 2008
EventCentre for the Study of Childhood and Youth International Conference, July 2008 - Sheffield, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Jul 200810 Jul 2008

Conference

ConferenceCentre for the Study of Childhood and Youth International Conference, July 2008
CountryUnited Kingdom
CitySheffield
Period8/07/0810/07/08

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Roberts, M-L., Wills, W. J., Lawton, J., Backett-Milburn, K., & MacKinnon, D. (2008). Representing a ‘good family’ : middle-class teenagers’ food, health and activity discourses. Paper presented at Centre for the Study of Childhood and Youth International Conference, July 2008, Sheffield, United Kingdom.