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ERIC Number: ED336674
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Adolescent Adventures and Peer Group Cultures.
Lightfoot, Cynthia
Individuals organize their behaviors in light of the social groups of which they consider themselves a part. Risks shared between individuals take on symbolic significance and become cultural meanings for those involved. In other words, risks provide content for creating shared knowledge significant for group relations. This study examined the question of whether differences in peer culture would map onto differences in reported risks. Subjects (N=41) were 16- to 18-year-olds who were interviewed about their reflections about risks taken by themselves, their friends, and hypothetical story characters. To identify specific affiliative patterns within the sample, subjects were asked to provide a list of close friends with whom they were likely to do risky and adventurous things. These responses provided the raw material for determining boundaries between groups, and were quantified with a package of social clustering and ordination techniques. Five separate groups were identified. Two groups were highly cohesive, with one in being contact with a larger community of teenagers and the other not. On one of the cohesive groups several members nominated individuals outside their group as partners in risk. In the other cohesive group no outside group members were nominated. The relatedness of peer group structure and the structure of reported risks has implications for the maintenance and transformation of peer group culture. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Risk Taking Behavior
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).