Anchored in accounts of young people’s personal experiences of loneliness, this book addresses important questions about tackling today’s epidemic of loneliness among young people.
It explores experiences of loneliness in early life, how it is navigated when first encountered and considers how social conditions of poverty, precarity, inequality and competitive pressures to succeed can dramatically influence these feelings.
Presenting diverse and nuanced social accounts of loneliness, the authors explore ways to harness the creative and positive potential of loneliness and provide evidence-based recommendations for policy makers, practitioners and young people to help tackle the crisis.
“I loved every page of this book! It is serious and sometimes sad, but it is also playful, critical, thoughtful and grounded in the multiple realities of young people’s lives. Its creative youth-centred methodology and findings challenge deficit-based and individualised understandings of this issue. The book inspired me as a researcher, informed me as a youth worker and nourished me as a person.” Tania de St Croix, King’s College London
"A timely book which questions conventional approaches to the question of youth loneliness and advocates a multi-dimensional approach that incorporates the positive aspects of solitude and being alone." Jean Spence, Independent writer
Janet Batsleer is a Reader in Youth and Community at Manchester Metropolitan University.
James Duggan is a Research Fellow in Childhood, Youth and Education studies at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Animate, attune, amplify
Finding oneself a loneliness agenda
I’m new here: creating a new research project and a young person led research agenda
PART I: The social conditions of loneliness
Loneliness and poverty
Being an outsider
The education system, aspiration and loneliness
PART II: The experience of loneliness
Loss, grief and loneliness
Being left out
Online spaces and connection
PART III: Building friendship and connection
Asking for help and offering connection
Youth work as a method
Creativity and solidarity as method: the example of Missing and other stories
New ways for thinking and feeling loneliness