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Towards a critique of "socio-educational" rationality in welfare entities

We set out to map the social welfare institutions that care for children and adolescents considered to be at "social and personal risk" in a town in the state of São Paulo, using a set of institutional analysis tools. Our role as a member of the Municipal Council of Children's and Adolescents' Rights and of the Municipal Council for Social Welfare permitted an analysis to be carried out of the documents in the archives belonging to these councils, in respect of registered charities, such as governamental organization, non-governamental organization and other charitable institutions. The results indicate that, in the universe of Social Welfare, the "child/adolescent constellation" orbits around the "socio-educational" star-king. All activities in the entities seem to be covered by this "master signifier" that predicates dimensions that are pedagogical and therapeutic, educational and corrective, surveillance and prevention related, promoting control and standardization.

Adolescents; Institutional analysis; Children; Public policies; Social psychology

Programa de Pós-Graduação em Psicologia, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Campinas Núcleo de Editoração SBI - Campus II, Av. John Boyd Dunlop, s/n. Prédio de Odontologia, 13060-900 Campinas - São Paulo Brasil, Tel./Fax: +55 19 3343-7223 - Campinas - SP - Brazil