By Katherine S. Newman
Why are adults of their twenties and thirties boomeranging again to or by no means leaving their mom and dad' houses within the world's wealthiest nations? Acclaimed sociologist Katherine Newman addresses this phenomenon during this well timed and unique publication that uncovers interesting hyperlinks among globalization and the failure-to-launch pattern. With over three hundred interviews carried out in six nations, Newman concludes that countries with vulnerable welfare states have the top frequency of accordion households. She thoughtfully considers the optimistic and destructive implications of those new relationships and means that as globalization reshapes the industrial panorama it additionally keeps to redefine our deepest lives.
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Additional info for The Accordion Family. Boomerang Kids, Anxious Parents,and the Private Toll of Global Competition
12 Like Kate, Roberto followed a meandering path that left him unsure of whether he merits the designation of adult. Sometimes he thinks he does, and sometimes he doesn’t. He explains: The word adult for me is not associated with a concrete age. That would be false. When does a person become an adult? I don’t know. I have left home. I’ve lived moments in which I have been economically independent, others in which I haven’t been independent. I make decisions on my own. I live on my own. But I still do not consider myself an adult.
He is a friendly boarder, and that’s fine with him—as it seems to be with them, at least for now. Their lack of control over him (something they don’t aspire to anyway) leaves the psychological space for Giovanni to define himself as autonomous. It is an independence disconnected from the financial ties that bind: adulthood is a state of mind. Carlo Morelli is thirty-two and lives with his parents in the Northern Italian city of Montà d’Alba in the Piedmont region. Renowned for its wineries, the area is a “mecca for gourmands,” particularly well known for its truffles.
Though he is a skilled worker, Giovanni knows he could not enjoy himself with his friends as he does if he had to support himself entirely on his own earnings. But since he pays no rent and can eat well at his mother’s table, his living expenses are low, leaving money for recreation. Maria cooks for the family, cleans Giovanni’s room, and provides advice when he asks for it, leaving the not-so-young man free to enjoy his passions, especially that motorcycle. “The biggest expenses I have to take care of are for going out … during the weekend, in the night, going out for dinner … or travels and holidays,” Giovanni explains.