chapter  6
Little publics and youth arts as cultural pedagogy
Pages 14

This chapter develops the concept of little publics in order to articulate the cultural politics of young people’s performing arts practices as a youth-centred cultural pedagogy and an important mode of civic participation. Little publics are multiple and made up of diverse political orientations. Depending on the investments that constitute the community in question, little publics can be spaces very much aligned to social or political norms and hegemonic agendas. They can be spaces of resistance; or indeed conflicted political sites brought together around shared aesthetic or intellectual concerns that unite politically divergent communities. Little publics are heterogeneous. They articulate shared, imagined communities in ways that can reproduce or contrast and contest popular public culture. Youth arts practices as little publics are cultural pedagogies that teach youth perspectives. They are made through young people’s modulations of media texts and dominant cultural positions. Little publics reproduce ideologies and present a collective, youthful iteration of public culture.