Drawing on feminist new materialist and post-
I use multimodal qualitative methods in investigating how power, conflict, and ethical relationality form in the peer cultures of children. These include speech-
I believe such studies are vitally important, for the following reasons.
One, children and young people often feel that they are left alone with their peer relations, and receive little support in relation to them.
Two, young people experience processes of harassment as phenomena they have little control over and feel too awkward to disclose to teachers or parents.
Three, people do not learn human (and other) relations automatically, although we often expect this to be true. Relational skills can and should be taught to children just as maths or literacy are taught.
Four, statistics state that ten percent of school-
Five, when tangled and prolonged, the challenges of peer relations tend to become more difficult to deal with and can lead to severe bullying and violence with long-
My current research interests and methods
My current interests include one, examining violence and ethical relationality in the peer and relationship cultures of children attending early and middle school; two, a study of those children most at risk of experiencing violence in their peer and relationship cultures; three, scrutinising the affective ties of youths in gendered histories and space and place; and four, considering new feminist, materialist, post-
I use multi-
My analysis aims to extend textual and linguistic limits, attending to the material-
Why am I doing this?
The Finnish Law of Primary Education asks Finnish schools to address gender-
I believe this work will offer valuable date on key aspects of violence, non-
I aim to ask, simply, ‘What else can a body do and become?’ and, ‘What else can data on child peer relations accomplish?’ New, expansive possibilities for supporting connections between children and their peers may transform these peer and relationship cultures, and lead to the development of new, innovative, sustainable pedagogies.
Note for teachers and parents
The ‘Academy of Finland’s guidelines for research ethics’ are the standard point of reference for every study I work in, and ethical approval is always obtained from the University of Oulu’s ethical committee. My approach is also always consultative and collaborative. Informed consent, written permission, is obtained from everyone participating in research and the research activities are designed with careful attention to the sensitive nature of the topic.
We create a safe research environment by which children can introduce views and experiences relevant to their everyday lives. Children can choose not to participate and may opt for informed dissent. People are made aware when they are filmed or photographed and a researcher will discuss issues of privacy and ethics with them. If a child would rather not appear in any visual data, that material will be removed from analysis and dissemination. School policies on child protection will be followed and if anything occurs that suggests a child might be at immediate risk of an abuse of power, a school’s child protection procedures will be followed and support put in place.
Kuva: Merja Ruotsalainen
Tuija Huuki tuija.huuki (at) oulu.fi Nais-
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