Given the scope of this project and its goal publishing three different articles, I have decided with my dissertation supervisor that the proposal will contain three different mini proposals.
However, after working in the three different mini-proposals I have realized that they still make sense as a whole. That is, the three different articles together answer the questions about digital youth participation in new media, with the media, and in the media, as well as their identities and practices. The general question of this big project it is still related to the participation that these youth develop in new media and with new media across three different societal fields/contexts/arenas/domains. How does this participation changes depending on the contexts, the different practices and identities, as well as how this participation is constrained by structural inequalities and how that is reflected in the cultural and social capitals that can be mobilized by youth. In sum, this dissertation is a study of the digital media practices of latino youth across three different fields/contexts/arenas, the kind of participation in the media and with the media that takes place, the multiple identities that are articulated, and how they are determined and constrained by structural inequalities. Or even better, how structural inequalities constrain the mobilization and acquisition of cultural and social capitals, and how this fact determines the practices, identities, and participation in the media and through the media.
The main question I want to answer is about participation and new media. How does digital media foster sociocultural practices and participation for latino/hispanic youth? What kind of participation is the one that they are having as they engage in digital media practices? How do these practices allow them to mobilize social and cultural capitals? What kind of identities are articulated? How does their participation changes across contexts?
My hypothesis is still that there are more opportunities for participation. It changes, it fluctuates, from minimal to maximal participation. Structural inequalities still limit the mobilization and acquisition of social and cultural capitals. There is a lot of potential. Latino/Hispanic youth is aware of the potential. Seems to be conscious about it. Given the opportunities to participate, they do it. With passion. However, they are not very strategic in their networking skills and have difficulties retaining social and cultural capitals.
Explore how latino/hispanic youth digital media practices activities are influenced by their socioeconomic status and context of use. Identify patterns of digital media usage among latino/hispanic youth across three different contexts.
How are their digital experiences? What are their specific interests? how do the access to technical equipment influence their usage? what are the especificities of their practices as latino/hispanic? their status as low and middle classes?
What are latino/hispanic youth patterns of usage of digital media? what is the relationship of social status and patterns of media use?
What are the results of digital media use for these latino/hispanic teens? Do they increment their participation (political participation, community engagement, popular culture, media, networks)? What kind of participation do they exercise across social contexts/domains/fields/settings, such as home, after school and the internet? What is the relationship between social status and benefiting from digital media usage?
Do their media practices contribute enhance their social and cultural capital? if so, how? is their use effective? profitable?
How about their creative agency? How do these technologies allow them to exercise their creative agency? and what are the results of their creative engagements?
I analyze three different contexts where the digital media practices can be observed. Three different social realms allow us to also understand digital media practices with an ecological perspective. Observe the kind of participation that occurs across the different realms.
Given the especific nature of the realms and contexts and their unique characteristics. Each of them will require an ad-hoc framework. Although the general framework of inequalities, participation, and social and cultural capitals will work for the three realms. The frameworks of familism, cultural brokerage, community of practice, and networked publics, will be applied for the specific contexts.
Incorporation of digital media into their everyday lives. Everyday practices. Mediated sociocultural practices at home, after-school, and the internet. Agency in these contexts. Creativity. Identity. Participation. What are the benefits and what can of capitals they can mobilize.
I would develop and lay out a relevant theoretical framework for each chapter. Despite the specificity of each chapter and its particular theoretical concerns, I elaborate a core theoretical framework through my dissertation that is supported in: minority youth, cultural and social capitals, and socio-cultural participation.
It is also about a specific sector of youth in the USA, the ones considered Hispanic/Latino. The fastest growing minority. And a group of youth that in the statistics looks as the one with highest drop out rates, low academic achievement, live under poverty conditions. This youth has been labeled many times as "at-risk". The segment of youth I focus is segmented by ethnicity and social class. Working and middle class latino/hispanic youth.
The empowering effect that is usually ascribed to new media, digital media, and the Web needs to to be weighed with respect to class origin and backgrounds. Different habitus « information habitus » from advantaged to less advantaged groups.
Relations between digital media and social inequalities? Complexity of the digital divide, or divides. Digital inequalities.
Explores how latino/hispanic youth use digital media in their everyday lives.
SNSs as part of Latino/Hispanic youth everyday activities. As an important site for digital media practices such as : news, music, information, video, communication between peers, entertainment. Creation, search, curation, circulation of information. For their specific public of peers. Looking at their specific practices of media spreading, circulation, curation. Social media ecosystem, web 2.0 as a a place. A specific setting. Here is based in self-reported activities and walk through their FB profiles. How about looking at the practice of sharing. As an important practice, situated in this SNSs, or networked publics. Conversations. Interactions. Social Network sites are important parts of latino/hispanic youth social life. They develop practices in those sites. And those sites conform an ecosystem, converge. Content circulates through them. Those practices of circulation are the ones that interest me. Understand the patterns of use, the practices made in this Social Network Sites. Using the framework of networked publics.
All these practices are done and situated in the everyday contexts of their family, after-school, and social media (SNSs ecosystem or Web 2.0 or social media platforms).
The practices across these three realms could be considered as interest-driven practices (CoP), family-driven practices (Family and home), and friendship-driven practices (SNSs). Three genres of participation. Working class latino/hispanic youth activities in the family context, in social media, and in after school (a digital video community of practice).
Understand the different kinds of participation, different forms, degrees. How does participation happen through media and in the media? across three contexts. Family, After-school (a digital video Community of Practice), and the social network site ecosystem.
Research in the ways latino/hispanic youth teens may actively engage with media. Youth engagements with digital media.
How about if it is not participation the focus of your thesis but just the media practices they develop, they are engage with, across three different contexts/fields/domains: family, after-school (a CoP), and SNSs. And how their identities flow across these contexts. As well as how their biculturalism, as latino/hispanics from Mexican origins, plays across the different contexts.
In this way, the presentation of the problem of study focuses only on digital inequalities, cultural and social capitals, and hipanic/latino youth.