Citizenship in everyday life - young Romanians' options
Department for Youth Policy Ministry of Youth and Sport Bucharest, Romania
The aims for this research have been to reveal how the young people perceive and assume or appropriate the social space, and to grasp the significations invested by them into the citizen statute. On the daily life axis I have taken into consideration the local, national and European dimensions.
Using an associative technique proposed by A. S. de Rosa, I have asked 60 young people from Bucharest, Cluj, Constanta and Ia?i to evoke short-terms or expressions associated by them with the city of residence, Romania and Europe. With the youngsters from Bucharest I have carried out in-depth interviews. I was concerned with grasping the attributes of the personal networks as far as attachment and trust; in getting details of these possible forms of sociability with information about constraints, responsibilities, social learning. The interrogative area was gradually enlarged, but before each discussion about the other three types of social space, the association questionnaires were filled in.
According the findings, the attachment and trust are the attributes for the proximal life space. The daily pursuit of these young persons is divided between duties and entertainment. Although a part of them have declared that "one hardly knows what kind of person is best to be nowadays", all of them are preoccupied by gathering cultural capital - educational or professional.
The larger the area of reference becomes, the less are the aspects with a strong visibility for youngsters. Local space is conveyed especially by appealing to the infrastructure, resources and societal frame. National area is "filtered" through the perspective of the societal frame and of the resources, and the European one only by relating to societal frame.
The idea of citizenship in the daily life is diminished to the individual responsibility, the relation with the state institutions is less mentioned, or the remarks are negative. Depending on the social space for which it is constructed, the emergence of citizenship seems to be dispersed by the predominance/lack of the feeling of belonging, of the value options and of their need to clarify the idea of nation.