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Influence of Adults and Peers on Adolescents' Lifestyles and Leisure-Styles (From Social World of Adolescents: International Perspectives, P 245-263, 1989, Klaus Hurrelmann and Uwe Engel, eds. -- See NCJ-120206)

NCJ Number
L B Hendry
Date Published
19 pages
Essential concerns for adolescents in the process of growing up are playing appropriate roles and selfhood, and these concerns are affected by family, school, peer, and leisure settings.
Tasks to be attempted during adolescence include developing a self-identity in light of physical changes, developing a gender identity, gaining a degree of independence from parents, accepting or rejecting family values, transitioning into an occupational role, and developing and extending friendships. The role of leisure may be significant in creating opportunities for identity development and in allowing the exercise of choice by adolescents as they select alternative social and physical contexts and experience variations in role and rule structures. Like adults, young people seek out leisure and social contexts in which to interact with peers. Leisure activities may be chosen for their personal meaning and for social expression, and these choices are affected by the family, peers, the educational system, the media, leisure promotion industries, and changes in the general social context such as massive unemployment. Sociocultural factors seem to predominate over physical and psychological ones at the juncture between childhood and adolescence. In addition, school influences represent important constraints and opportunities for youth leisure. The educational system provides a potentially valuable structure within which interests may be aroused and cultivated. Adults can also play an important role in peer group interactions and leisure contexts. The major impact of unemployment on adolescents seems to be its ultimate effect on the transition from adolescence to adulthood. Being unable to find work appears to frustrate adolescents' expectations of postschool work and leisure patterns. 56 references, 1 figure.


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