The interviews revealed changes in the interplay and counterplay between student identity and social identity when new identities connected to the massacre were introduced in the school arena. This dynamic has two prominent contradictory aspects: (1) the strong need to avoid being associated with the massacre, yet (2) they also experience a high degree of imposed external framing of identity configuration. This article investigates school as an arena where unwanted identity changes are played out. School emerges as an arena that can complicate the rehabilitation process by confirming and specifying the changes caused by exposure to trauma. Implications for what trauma support at school could entail for trauma-exposed adolescents are indicated.
Two and a half years after the July 2011 massacre on the Norwegian island of Utøya, 68 of the adolescent survivors were interviewed about their everyday life at school.