|From Subculture to a Means of Social Inclusion: Transnationalism and Skateboarding Culture in Amman, Jordan
|Acta Fakulty filozofické Západočeské univerzity v Plzni. 2020, č. 1, s. 19-35.
|Západočeská univerzita v Plzni
|skateboarding;Jordánsko;střední východ;kultura mládeže;subkultůra;transnacionalismus;sociální začleňování
|Keywords in different language:
|skateboarding;Jordan;Middle East;youth culture;subculture;transnationalism;social inclusion
|Abstract in different language:
|The paper represents an ethnographic study of a skateboarding community in Amman, Jordan. My aim is to explore how participation in skateboarding influenced identity construction of the community members and their relationships with a broader social milieu they lived in. I explore the social composition of Amman’s skate scene, as well as issues of inclusion and social diversity. Subsequently, I seek to find out how transnational ties of Amman’s skaters and interaction with their foreign counterparts influenced the development of Amman’s skate scene. The paper is based on data collected through ethnographic fieldwork in Amman between September and December 2014 and subsequently in August 2018. Firstly, the fieldwork consisted of participant observation at skateboarding locations. Secondly, it included semi-structured interviews with a total of fifteen respondents – Jordanian skaters and foreigners involved in skateboarding projects in Amman – while ten more interviews were conducted via communication platforms such as Messenger and Skype. I also analyzed content of relevant websites and social media platforms. The study shows the Amman’s skate community as a subculture that revolved around appropriating places in the urban space. I explain that skateboarding in the Jordanian capital prior to 2014 was an activity confined to relatively privileged youth, since participation required economic and social capital indispensable to gain access to skateboarding equipment. Positioning Amman’s skate community in a global context, I show that the skaters’ transnational ties, related primarily to their family backgrounds, were also expanded through participation in skateboarding. Namely, I show the role of Philadelphia Skateboards – the first skateboarding brand in the Arab World – in stimulating active interaction between Amman’s skaters and their foreign counterparts. In the last chapter, I focus on the circumstances of 7Hills Skateparks project. I explain a broader context of skateboarding within ASDP movement (Action Sports for Peace and Development) and the policies of Make Life Skate Life – the organisation which carried out the project. I also demonstrate how the project exposed skateboarding to new participants and transformed skateboarding from a subcultural practice pursued by a group of Westernised youth into a tool for social inclusion.
|© Západočeská univerzita v Plzni
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|Články / Articles (KSA)
Číslo 1 (2020)
Číslo 1 (2020)
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