Download Act Your Age! A Cultural Construction of Adolescence by Nancy Lesko PDF

By Nancy Lesko

Are our present methods of conversing approximately "the challenge of early life" relatively that varied than these of prior generations? For the earlier decade, Act Your Age! has supplied a provocative and now vintage research of the authorized methods of viewing children. by means of applying a groundbreaking "history of the current" technique that resists conventional chronology, writer Nancy Lesko analyzes either old and current social and political elements that produce the presumed "natural adolescent." This ensuing seminal paintings within the box of youngster research forces readers to reconsider the dominant interpretations at the social building of early life from the nineteenth century in the course of the current day.
This new version is up-to-date all through and contains a complete new bankruptcy on 1950s-era assumptions approximately formative years and the corresponding connections to children this present day. As in all chapters, Lesko presents cautious exam of the troubles of nationalism, sexuality, and social order by way of how they're projected onto the definitions of youngsters within the media, in colleges, and in the house.

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Extra resources for Act Your Age! A Cultural Construction of Adolescence

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The female percentage of the workforce also increased: from 16 percent in 1890 to 20 percent in 1900 to 25 percent in 1910. By 1930, women comprised nearly 50 percent of the workforce. With so many women in schools and in workplaces, traditional notions of masculinity as synonymous with autonomy and self-control were no longer tenable. Urbanization and the growth of bureaucratic workplaces meant that men could not control their own work lives nor be autonomous in them. Fewer men owned their own shops, controlled their own labor, owned their own farms; increasingly men were economically dependent and subject to the time clock.

27 In this way recapitulation’s analogy of primitives and children set up basic ways of knowing, labeling, and ranking that were endlessly repeated in child rearing but also in psychological knowledges and public policies about adolescence. Adolescent development similarly invokes and repeats social hierarchies and racial taxonomies of being, knowing, and desiring. Adolescence was singled out as a crucial point at which an individual (and a race) leaped to a developed, superior, Western selfhood or remained arrested in a savage state.

I quote her conclusion at length because it is central to understanding the construction of modern adolescence: If we are looking to trace the embeddedness of race in the cultivation of the bourgeois self, it may be that this prescriptive discourse on child rearing is a place to turn.... For becoming adult and bourgeois meant distinguishing oneself from that which was uncivilized, lower-class, and non-European.... 27 In this way recapitulation’s analogy of primitives and children set up basic ways of knowing, labeling, and ranking that were endlessly repeated in child rearing but also in psychological knowledges and public policies about adolescence.

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