Title“Doing Transitions”: A New Research Perspective
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsWalther, A, Stauber, B, Settersten, RA
Book TitleDoing Transitions in the Life Course: Processes and Practices
Pagination3 - 18
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
ISBN Number978-3-031-13512-5

Life courses and the transitions that mark them are highly complex phenomena of social reproduction. Past research has been driven by institutional actors and policymakers concerned with mitigating problems such as social disadvantage and risks of exclusion. It has tried to reduce complexity to make it easier to observe and measure the effects of transitions on individual life trajectories. This chapter joins several other recent attempts to better address the complexities of life course by introducing a new framework – Doing Transitions – for understanding life course transitions, which also provides a foundation for the chapters of this book. This framework is inspired by a praxeological perspective, which takes as its starting point the proposition that transitions do not simply exist but are constantly constituted through social practices and the interrelation of social discourses, institutional regulation, and individual processes of learning, education, and coping. After describing the doing transitions framework, this chapter provides a brief overview of the volume and its contributions, which are organized around three themes: institutions and organizations; times and normativities; and materialities, such as bodies, spaces, and artefacts.