From exclusion towards space sharing: encounters between young people and control in a shopping mall

 

Shopping malls have become important settings for young people’s hanging out. Their gatherings often evoke disapproval in adults, whose opinions are easily represented in the media with simplified views of confrontations between the youth and the surveillance staff of the malls. In this article, the aim is to question these contradictions by analysing the findings that were gained from two separate studies: an intensive study conducted with teenagers hanging out in a shopping mall in the city centre of Helsinki, and a large survey based on observations and interviews conducted in eighteen cities and twenty-two shopping malls in different parts in Finland.

Keywords: young people, hanging out, shopping mall, security guards