Skip to main content

Research Repository

See what's under the surface

Advanced Search

Home from home: UK civilising offensives in residential childcare.

Vertigans, Stephen


Stephen Vertigans


Approaches to residential childcare within the United Kingdom incorporate processes that are ostensibly types of civilising offensives. The offensives are determined by political and media groups in an attempt to alter the behaviour of problematic sections of the population in alignment with populist notions about what constitutes civilised norms, values and activities. These policies are part of recurring child rearing and schooling offensives that were noticeable throughout industrialisation and colonialism. Contemporary approaches intentionally, or otherwise, are part of wider processes which are resulting in emergent and reinforcing spatial, dispositional barriers between the established and young outsiders. Interconnected weakening chains of mutual interdependence are enabling the disproportionate imposition of punitive measures against vulnerable members of society to either be supported or ignored. These fraying threads of relationships present further challenges for children and young people living in care and their carers who must seek to develop life chances against a backdrop of declining opportunities.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 31, 2015
Journal Human figurations
Electronic ISSN 2166-6644
Publisher Michigan Publishing
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 4
Issue 1
Article Number 4
Institution Citation VERTIGANS, S. 2015. Home from home: UK civilising offensives in residential childcare. Human figurations [online], 4(1), article number 4. Available from:
Keywords Civilising offensive; Established outsider relations; Informalisation; Residential childcare; Young people
Publisher URL


You might also like

Downloadable Citations