Profile: Jacqueline Kennelly

Profile: Jacqueline Kennelly


Jacqueline Kennelly - Associate Professor


On leave until August 2014

Areas of interest

My broad research interests encompass youth cultures, citizenship, democracy, social inclusion and exclusion, globalization/neoliberalism, social movements, urban sociology, and education. My primary theoretical influences include Pierre Bourdieu, Hannah Arendt, Paul Ricoeur, feminist theorists of agency, democracy, citizenship, and the state (e.g. Wendy Brown, Judith Butler, Seyla Benhabib, Lois McNay) and many theorists connected to the Birmingham Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (e.g. Paul Willis, Stuart Hall, Phil Cohen, Anoop Nayak). Methodologically, I do qualitative work that could be characterized as phenomenological in nature, incorporating both traditional ethnographic methods (e.g. interviewing, participant-observation) and non-traditional (e.g. visual and web-based methods).


Before joining the department, I completed a SSHRC-funded post-doctoral fellowship with the University of Cambridge, where I studied the impacts of the Vancouver (2010) and London (2012) Olympics on low-income young people, under the supervision of Dr. Diane Reay. My SSHRC- and Killam-funded doctoral research, completed at the University of British Columbia and supervised by Dr. Jo-Anne Dillabough, examined the classed, racialized, and gendered cultural formations of youth activist communities in Canada, and their intersections with state-informed categories such as ‘citizen’  or ‘democratic engagement.’ The results from that study have been summarized in various peer-reviewed journal articles, and was published in 2011 by Palgrave-MacMillan in a monograph entitled Citizen Youth: culture, activism, and agency in a neoliberal era.

Click here for a pod-cast of a debate in which I participated, entitled ‘Advocate or Activist: what is the best way to effect change?’ And a link to a blog discussing the debate, here.

Related research, carried out in collaboration with Dr. Dillabough, ethnographically investigated urban low-income young people’s subcultural responses to such contemporary phenomenon as education and welfare retrenchment, ghettoization of the urban poor, and emergent forms of youth citizenship. The results from that study have been published in a number of peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters as well as a monograph published in 2010 by Routledge, entitled Lost youth in the global city: class, culture, and the urban imaginary.

Current research continues to focus on the urban effects of the Olympic Games for low-income, homeless, and street-involved young people, and is supported by a SSHRC standard research  grant (2010 to 2013).

Click here for an article published by the Dominion about this research.

Click here for a CBC article discussing this research.

Click here for an interview I did with Vancouver Co-op Radio about this research.

Courses taught at Carleton include Studies in Children and Childhood (SOCI/ANTH 3045), Advanced Studies in Qualitative Methods (SOCI 4003), Studies in the Sociology of Education (SOCI 3300), and two special topics graduate courses: one on youth cultures and globalization and the other on feminist theory (both are listed as SOCI 5806). I have also supervised various graduate and undergraduate directed reading courses on social movements, methodology, urban sociology, youth cultures, and feminist theory.

Selected publications


Kennelly, J. (2011). Policing young people as citizens-in-waiting: legitimacy, spatiality, and governance. British Journal of Criminology, Volume 51, Number 2, pp 336-354.

Kennelly, J. and P. Watt (2011, in press). Sanitizing public space in Olympic host cities: the spatial experiences of marginalized youth in Vancouver (2010) and London (2012). Sociology.

Kennelly, J. and K. Lewellyn (2011, in press). Educating for active compliance: discursive constructions in citizenship education. Citizenship Studies.

Kennelly, J. (2009). Learning to protest: youth activist cultural politics in contemporary urban Canada. Review of Education, Pedagogy, and Cultural Studies. Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 293-316.

Kennelly, J., P. Ugor and S. Poyntz. (2009). Special issue introduction: youth, cultural politics, and new social spaces in an era of globalization. Review of Education, Pedagogy, and Cultural Studies. Volume 31, Issue 4, pp 255-269.

Kennelly, J. (2009). Good citizen/bad activist: the cultural role of the state in youth activism. Review of Education, Pedagogy, and Cultural Studies. Volume 31, Issues 2-3, pp 127-149.

Kennelly, J. (2009). Youth cultures, activism, and agency: revisiting feminist debates. Gender and Education. Volume 21, Issue 3, pp 259-272.

Kennelly, J. and J. Dillabough (2008). Young people mobilizing the language of citizenship: struggles for classification and new meaning in an uncertain world. British Journal of Sociology of Education, 29(5), pp 493-508.

Kennelly, J. (2006). “Acting out” in the public sphere: the challenges of community theatre to citizenship education. Canadian Journal of Education, 29(2), pp 541-562.

Dillabough, J., E. Wang and J. Kennelly (2005). “Ginas,” “Thugs,” and “Gangstas”: Young people’s struggles to “become somebody” in working-class urban Canada. Journal of Curriculum Theorizing, 21(2), pp 83-108.



Kennelly, J. (2011). Citizen youth: culture, activism, and agency in a neoliberal era. PalgraveMacMillan: New York.

Dillabough, J. and J. Kennelly. (2010) Lost youth in the global city: class, culture, and the urban imaginary. RoutledgeFalmer: New York.




Kennelly, J. (Principal Investigator, 2010 to 2013). Olympic Games, urban change, and youth cultures: investigating Olympic impacts on low-income young people in Vancouver and London. Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, Standard Research Grant.