Societies2014, 4(4), 606-622; doi:10.3390/soc4040606 - published 29 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Although over 100,000 health and medical mobile apps have been placed on the market, few critical social analyses have been yet undertaken of the role of these apps in healthcare, preventive health and health promotion. In this article I present an argument for approaching the study of mobile apps as sociocultural artefacts, focusing specifically on those that have been developed on health and medical topics. This perspective acknowledges that apps are digital objects that are the products of human decision-making, underpinned by tacit assumptions, norms and discourses already circulating in the social and cultural contexts in which they are generated, marketed and used. First, I provide the context, by discussing the gradual digitisation of health and medical information since the advent of the Internet and the emergence of health and medical apps as one of the latest developments. Second, I discuss how a critical perspective may be employed to analyse the social, cultural and political dimensions of health and medical apps. Finally I illustrate how such an approach may be applied by giving a case study of an analysis of the top 10 ranked health and medical apps on the Apple App Store on one day, outlining some major themes and discourses that emerge.
Societies2014, 4(4), 587-605; doi:10.3390/soc4040587 - published 23 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This paper addresses sex integration in martial arts and combat sports, discussing the implications of mixed-sex training for challenging orthodox Western constructions of gender. Drawing on qualitative interviews with 37 long-term martial arts practitioners from around the English East Midlands between 2007–2011, the paper argues that restrictive, essentialist and hierarchal conceptions of sex difference can be challenged through integrated training practices. The paper advocates the “undoing” of gender in this regard as helping to build a more progressive, inclusive and liberal form of physical culture, seen as a key potential of sex-integrated training. To that end, the paper makes a number of proposals for instructors and practitioners interested in developing such inclusive environments in their own clubs and training settings.
Societies2014, 4(4), 561-586; doi:10.3390/soc4040561 - published 23 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: New information and communication technologies (ICTs) challenge existing beliefs regarding the exchange of social resources within a network. The present study examines individuals’ perceived access to social, emotional, and instrumental resources by analyzing relational and Facebook-specific characteristics of dyadic relationships. Results suggest that the social and technical affordances of the site—including visibility of content and connections, as well as streamlined processes for interacting with a large audience—may augment existing perceptions of resource access for some ties while providing a major (or sole) outlet to interact and exchange resources with others. Specifically, weaker ties appear to benefit more than strong ties from engagement in directed communication and relationship maintenance strategies, while additional variations were observed across relationship category, dyad composition, and geographic proximity. In summary, these findings provide new evidence for how positive relational gains may be derived from site use.
Societies2014, 4(4), 549-560; doi:10.3390/soc4040549 - published 22 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Bullying behaviors occur across the lifespan and have increasingly migrated to online platforms where they are known as cyberbullying. The purpose of this study was to explore the phenomenon of cyberbullying among college students. Participants were recruited for focus groups through purposeful sampling, including recruitment from groups traditionally at risk for bullying. Focus groups discussed views and perceptions of cyberbullying on campuses. Groups were led by a trained facilitator and were audio recorded and manually transcribed. The constant comparative approach was used to identify themes and representative quotations. The 42 participants had an average age of 19.2 (SD = 1.2), 55% were female, 83% were Caucasian. Three themes emerged from the data: (1) lack of agreement on a definition of cyberbullying, but consensus on three representative scenarios: hacking, dirty laundry and mocking; (2) concerns with translating definitions of traditional bullying to cyberbullying; (3) opinions that cyberbullying may manifest differently in college compared to younger adolescents, including increased potential for long-term effects. College students were not in agreement about a theoretical definition, but they could agree upon specific representative instances of cyberbullying. Future studies could consider using common case examples or vignettes of cyberbullying, or creation of developmentally representative definitions by age group.
Societies2014, 4(4), 532-548; doi:10.3390/soc4040532 - published 13 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This paper argues that the feminisation of migration has heightened the awareness of human trafficking, yet the feminisation of poverty is a social concept that is yet to be fully understood within the context of human trafficking. The false notion of “return” has been given as a solution to those individuals who are “out of place” or have been displaced as “victims of trafficking”. This article will discuss the Right to Remain visa applications of 12 women who were trafficked from post-Soviet countries to Israel, by examining the impact that gender, level of poverty and each woman’s decision to migrate has had on her life. In addition, this article will analyse the life experiences of the 12 women who experienced human trafficking. It will explore the idea that each woman is a “victim of trafficking” and that, conversely, this may be understood as a means to negate a more nuanced understanding of women’s mobility. Finally, this article will provide an intersectional analysis of trafficking flows in the world today.
Societies2014, 4(3), 506-531; doi:10.3390/soc4030506 - published 18 September 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In recent years, substantial gains have been made in our understanding of the influence of parenting behaviors and styles on adolescent emotional and behavioral outcomes. Empirical work focusing on the associations between parenting and adolescent outcomes is important because the influence of parenting during adolescence continues to affect behaviors into adulthood. Additionally, there has been considerable attention paid to the mechanisms that shape parenting that then influence adolescent outcomes. For instance, researchers have found that neighborhood conditions moderated the association between parenting and adolescent development. In this paper, several covariates and contextual effects associated with parenting and adolescent outcomes will be discussed. Also, parental behaviors, parental styles and adolescent outcomes are discussed in this literature review. This review provides an assessment of the literature on parenting and adolescent outcomes from the past decade and includes advancements in parenting research. The review concludes with a summary of major research findings, as well as a consideration of future directions and implications for practice and policy.