Professor Hanne Haavind's ongoing research project, Department of Psychology, University of Oslo

The social transition from 12 to 14: Developmental domains and social support in a multicultural context

This is a field-based study of girls and boys from immigrant families and families of permanent residency in Oslo, Norway. In a two-year collaboration with approximately 30 children who attend the last year in elementary school in an inner-city school of Oslo, their everyday experiences have been recorded at regular intervals through personal life-mode interviews, through focused group-interviews, and through ethnographic observations from their different social arenas in their classroom, the schoolyard and their neighborhoods. This collection of data has been analyzed in order to trace their transition from children to youth. The actual school is a meeting ground for children of diverse ethnic origin and social class, and their joint construction of meaning will include how they create alliances and contrasts according to gender, class and ethnicity. There is a substantial variation in how each child approach or reject cultural pathways for how to move from being a child into being an adolescent. The study will present the communalities and specificities in how the children transform his or her social opportunities and his or her personal capacities, into a trajectory that is - or is not - sustainable to him-herself and pals and parents and other adults involved in supporting these childhood transitions.


Porfessor Hanne Haavind, University of Oslo

Professor Liv Mette Gulbrandsen, Oslo University College

Research Fellow Mona Iren Hauge, NKVTS (Nasjonalt kunnskapssenter om vold og traumatisk stress)


Gulbrandsen, Liv Mette (2002). Storbyjenter (Girls in the City). In Kirsten Thorsen og Ruth Toverud (Eds.), Kulturpsykologi. Bevegelser i livsløp [Cultural psychology. Changes through the life course]. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget.

Gulbrandsen, Liv Mette (2003). Peer relations as arenas for gender constructions among young teenagers. Pedagogy, Culture and Society, 11, 113-132.

Gulbrandsen, Liv Mette (2006). Fra småjenter til ungjenter. Heteroseksualitet som normativ utviklingsretning [From little girls to young teens. Heterosexuality as normative developmental pathway]. Tidsskrift for kjønnsforskning, 30, (4), 5-20.

Gulbrandsen, Liv Mette (2008). Utforskende samtaler med unge mennesker og foreldrene deres. [Exploratory conversations with young people and their parents]. In Bente Puntervold Bøe and Bennedichte C. Rappana Olsen (Eds.), Utfordrende foreldreskap [Challengeing Parenthoods]. Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk.

Haavind, Hanne (2003). Masculinity by rule-breaking. Cultural contestations in the transitional move from being a child to being a young male. NORA, Nordic Journal of Women’s Studies, 11, 89-100.

Haavind, Hanne (2006). Den nye Norah [The new Norah]. Samtiden - tidsskrift for politikk, litteratur og samfunnsspørsmål, no. 4, 52-64.

Haavind, Hanne (2007). Accountability in persons: What is in the telling to others about yourself? In D. Staunæs & J. Kofoed (Eds.), Magtballader [Plays in power] (Pp. 159-178). Copenhagen: Danmarks Pædagogiske Universitets Forlag.

Haavind, H. (2009). Contesting and recognizing historical changes and selves in development. Unpublished manuscript. Department of Psychology, University of Oslo.

Hauge, Mona Iren (2003). Jenter i hvirvelvind Konstruksjoner av kjønn, alder og etnisitet blant jenter i 12-14 års alderen [Girls in the whirlwind: Constructions of gender, age and ethnicity among 12-14 year old girls]. Kvinneforskning, 3, 32-43.

Hauge, M.-I. (2009). Bodily practices and discourses of hetero-femininity: girls’ constitution of subjectivities in their social transition between childhood and adolescence, Gender and Education.

Hauge, M.-I. and Haavind, H. (2010, in press). Boys’ bodies and the constitution of adolescent masculinities, Sports, Education and Society.