Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Whatever the Hell I want to

I am studying emerging adulthood and ethnic differences. Emerging adulthood is roughly defined as the stage of life that occurs between the ages of 18 through mid/late 20's.

According to one study by Jeffrey Arnett, Whites, Blacks, Latinos, and Asians all value independence at roughly equal levels. However, all but Whites value interdependence, norm compliance, and capacity to have a family as a marker of adulthood.

Whites more than any of the listed minority groups are fiercely independent and individualistic - and arguably isolated. Whites value individualism more than communal markers of adulthood. They want more autonomy, more freedom, and more latitude. Unilateral decision making unfettered and unconfronted appears to be the norm for Whites.

In short, if you're a white American and want to become an adult, all you have to achieve is the ability to do whatever the Hell you want to. If you can do this, then you'll be a grown up.

What does this mean?


Jenni said...

unless you are in the church, and then you won't be considered a grown up until you are married with children.....

Fajita said...

Ah yes, this is true, but somewhat. Many whites are leaving church altogether - thus the rise of the emerging church and postmodern Christianity.

Although flawed, it is a place where adulthood can be valued without the norms traditional religious structures offer.

not sure what to make of the trends, but they are thre.