Social withdrawal of young people in Hong Kong: a social exclusion perspective

Victor Wong, Winnie Ying

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review


In the light of the social exclusion perspective, this paper discusses the indicators and different forms of social withdrawal experienced by young people in Hong Kong. The study examined the case records of 88 service users aged 13–24, and conducted 4 focus group interviews with a team of social workers involved in outreaching and reengaging the socially excluded users. Youth's personal agency exercised in their reaction to life events and crisis in the form of social withdrawal is arguably a complex social process, which is shaped, amongst other factors, by the hegemonic definition of youth trajectories and transitions to adulthood, and equally important by social exclusion at the institutional, cultural and relational levels. It is argued that both the structural and subjective dimensions of social withdrawal and reengagement work deserve critical examination in order not to further reproduce social inequalities and disadvantages.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-91
Number of pages31
JournalHong Kong Journal of Social Work
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2006

User-Defined Keywords

  • Young People
  • Social Withdrawal
  • Social Exclusion
  • Reengagement


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