Psychology

Title

Emerging Adulthood: The Winding Road from the Late Teens through the Twenties

Document Type

Book

Abstract

The lives of people from age eighteen to twenty-nine change dramatically but recently this has change has become more profound and a new stage of life has developed. Known as "emerging adulthood", this stage is distinct from both the adolescence that precedes it and the young adulthood that comes in its wake. Rather than marrying and becoming parents in their early twenties, most people in industrialized societies now postpone these transitions until at least their late twenties. This book identifies and labels this period of limbo, exploration, instability, possibility, and self-focus. An increasing number of emerging adults emphasize the importance of meaningful and satisfying work to a degree not seen in prior generations. Marrying later and exploring more casual sexual relationships have created different hopes and fears concerning long-term commitments and the differences between love and sex. Emerging adults also face the challenge of defending their non-traditional lifestyles to parents and others outside their generation who have made more traditional choices. In contrast to previous portrayals of emerging adults, the book's research shows that they are particularly skilled at maintaining contradictory emotions - they are confident while still being wary, and optimistic in the face of large degrees of uncertainty.

Publication Title

Emerging Adulthood: The Winding Road from the Late Teens through the Twenties

Publication Date

2006

First Page

1

Last Page

280

ISBN

9780199786688

DOI

10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195309379.001.0001

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