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Emerging AdulthoodThe Winding Road from the Late Teens through the Twenties$
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Jeffrey Jensen Arnett

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195309379

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195309379.001.0001

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From Emerging Adulthood to Young Adulthood

From Emerging Adulthood to Young Adulthood

What Does It Mean to Become an Adult?

(p.207) 10 From Emerging Adulthood to Young Adulthood
Emerging Adulthood

Jeffrey Jensen Arnett

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers, through the eyes of another group of emerging adults, the passage from emerging adulthood to young adulthood, focusing on the question of what it means to become an adult. The discussion starts by exploring how adulthood has been defined in traditional cultures and in the past in American history, then at how emerging adults today define adulthood and assess their own progress toward adult status. The subjects in this chapter then reflect on their mixed feelings about leaving adolescence — from the perspective of emerging adulthood. They also describe their mixed feelings about becoming adults — from the perspective of emerging adulthood, reaching adulthood promises stability but evokes fears of stagnation. Finally, their views of the future are examined, and how they foresee a happy and successful life for themselves even as they believe the world in general is fraught with peril, are examined.

Keywords:   emerging adulthood, emerging adults, young adulthood, adolescence, stability

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