Disconnectivity synced with identity cultivation: adolescent narratives of digital disconnection
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionJournal of Computer-Mediated Communication. 2022, 27 (6), zmac025. 10.1093/jcmc/zmac025
This article elucidates adolescent digital disconnection through the lens of narrative identity development to answer the research question: “How do adolescent disconnection experiences play into ongoing identity development processes?” The study draws from qualitative interviews with 17 Norwegian adolescents. The findings indicate that adolescents are ambivalent about their relationships with social networking sites, producing ripple effects on their motivation and disconnection practices. The findings are explained through the cultivation of narrative identity. Thus, this article proposes that adolescent digital disconnection is aligned with identity formation, reflected in narrative themes and corresponding features. By detailing how ongoing identity construction processes underpin the need and ability to disconnect, this article contributes a developmental perspective to the digital disconnection literature.