Visualising Social Divisions in Berlin: Children's After-School Activities in Two Contrasted City Neighbourhoods

Olga den Besten


The article raises the issue of interconnectedness of social and spatial divisions, and addresses this issue through considering the phenomenon of urban segregation. The study explores children's and young people's experiences in two socially contrasted neighbourhoods in Berlin through subjective maps drawn by the children. The article focuses on major differences between children's representations of their "subjective territory" in the two segregated areas. Such territory looks larger and better explored in the drawings of children from a socially advantaged area, who picture a dense network of after-school "enrichment" activities and friends' homes. In contrast, children, mostly migrant, from a socially disadvantaged area depict rather few places for spending time after school, one of the most important of them being a free-access youth club. The article argues that children's social exploration of their neighbourhood is activity-bound and depends on financial resources and cultural capital available to these children.
URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs1002353


migrant children; social divisions; visual methods; subjective maps; children's drawings; activity theory; urban segregation

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Copyright (c) 2010 Olga den Besten

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