Archives for July 2016

Coming of age stories : now and then

Text of a talk given to Birkbeck College Department of Literature June 2016 Introduction: the youth question then and now In this talk I am going to be taking a line of thought for a walk in two directions at once. I will stepping back from the present, to   retrace an argument  about the youth question which I first articulated in the late 1960’s and 70’s  at a time when Mods,Rockers  and Skinheads, Beats and Hippies were highly visible signs  of a deeper  shift in the tectonic plates of the British class  system. The emergence of these youth cultures also signaled the fact that  the  fixed positions of gender and  generation which had hitherto signposted the key stages of growing up as a boy or a girl, were becoming much more fluid and negotiable, though  with a very  different impact  on each side of the class tracks. New codes of [Read More…]