By Nancy Lesko
Are our present methods of conversing approximately "the challenge of formative years" quite that various than these of prior generations? For the prior decade, Act Your Age! has supplied a provocative and now vintage research of the approved methods of viewing youngsters. by means of applying a groundbreaking "history of the current" technique that resists conventional chronology, writer Nancy Lesko analyzes either historic and current social and political components that produce the presumed "natural adolescent." This ensuing seminal paintings within the box of stripling examine forces readers to reconsider the dominant interpretations at the social building of formative years from the nineteenth century in the course of the current day.
This new version is up-to-date all through and incorporates a complete new bankruptcy on 1950s-era assumptions approximately formative years and the corresponding connections to kids at the present time. As in all chapters, Lesko offers cautious exam of the worries of nationalism, sexuality, and social order by way of how they're projected onto the definitions of children within the media, in faculties, and in the house.
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Extra info for Act Your Age! A Cultural Construction of Adolescence
What came to be defined as valued and normative adolescent behaviors were grounded upon white middle-class male lives, needs, and perspectives. Just as adolescence was inscribed by whiteness, so was it constructed as synonymous with virile masculinity. Crises of nation and empire in England and the United States suggest that nationalism was also woven into concerns for white boys and their progress. National renewal was to rest upon an interventionist state, one of whose priorities was raising proper boys.
At the same time, virulent racism provided opportunities to protect white women and tradition. 41 This incitement to perform masculinity was a central feature of the need to make boys strong, courageous, loyal, and patriotic. Making Nations, Boys, and Desires There is no automatic or immediately understood connection between nations, nationalism, and conceptions of adolescence. However, nation-making was an overriding issue and concern at the turn of the century and contributed important aspects to the emerging ideas of adolescence and the future.
In my view, adolescence was strategized as the right age to get boys to imagine and desire a particular national and international order. In desiring a particular nationalism, boys would likely become willing to struggle and sacrifice for this national identity. 42 In Chapter Two I will discuss how team sports and team loyalty became Up and Down the Great Chain of Being 35 fixed components of proper coming of age, but here I want to describe some historically specific interests for boys to become good citizens.
Act Your Age! A Cultural Construction of Adolescence by Nancy Lesko