School bullying and the micro-politics of girls' gossip disputes
2012 (English)In: Disputes in Everyday Life: Social and Moral Orders of Children and Young People / [ed] Susan Danby & Maryanne Theobald, Bingley U.K.: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2012, Vol. 15, 297-323 p.Chapter in book (Refereed)
Purpose – In this chapter, we examine an extended gossip dispute event, in which a peer group of 11-year-old girls take action against a girl who has reported about school bullying to the teacher by examining how the accused girls construct their own sociopolitical order away from the adults.
move for the targeted girl. The micro-politics of the extended gossip dispute is pervasive in terms of how the accused girls strengthen social alignments of power, depict the transgressor by categorizing her as insane, and remedy the norm breaches through justifying their own actions.
Social implications – The success with which the girls here manage to turn the school’s bullying intervention practice into a system of retaliation emphasizes the need for highlighting the micro-politics, of children’s everyday practices away from adults.
Approach – The analysis draws on ethnographic fieldwork within a Swedish multiethnic school setting combined with detailed analysis (conversation analysis and membership categorization analysis) of children’s language practices.
Findings – It is found that the school’s bullying intervention practice sets the stage for a trajectory of a gossip dispute event in which the accused girls work out their own version of the telling as snitching, reallocate blame, and project the future consequences for the girl being accountable for the telling. A moral order emerges via the organization of social actions, alignments, occasion-specific identities, and pejorative person descriptors, rendering the event of telling the teacher a disastrous
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Bingley U.K.: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2012. Vol. 15, 297-323 p.
, Sociological Studies of Children and Youth, ISSN 1537-4661 ; Vol. 15
Gossip disputes, telling, school bullying, girls, peer language practices, micro-political processes
Research subject Education
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-190229ISBN: 978-1-78052-876-2OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-190229DiVA: diva2:583190
ProjectsI demokratins marginaler
FunderSwedish Research Council