ERIC Number: ED306176
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1988-Oct-10
Reference Count: N/A
The Social and Civic Attitudes, Beliefs and Values of American Youth.
Branson, Margaret Stimmann
This paper presents a portrait of youth in the United States--one that is at odds with media images painting a gloomy picture of a deeply troubled and irresponsible younger generation. Drawing upon numerous studies, Branson states that more students are staying in school longer, fewer drop out before earning a diploma, and fewer young girls become premature parents. U.S. citizens of all ages--children, adolescents, and adults--continue to believe that there is no society, no country quite like their own. Patriotism, developing in early childhood and continuing through adulthood, plays an important role in our lives. Young and old, we tend to condemn those who espouse "extreme" views or non-centrist tendencies. Increasing numbers of young people are calling themselves independent in politics. Many political scientists attribute this to the addition of new issues to the political agenda and the inability of the established parties to respond. Youth in particular, exhibit opinions and beliefs about a wide variety of contemporary issues. Several figures detail the attitudes of elementary to college students on issues affecting the United States and the world. As future adults and U.S. leaders, the youth of the 1980s are a determined and pragmatic lot. They aspire to advanced educations, successful careers, material comforts, marriage, families, and friends that they can rely on. While concerned with particular issues, they shrink from identifying with political parties or doctrinaire positions; they have few lofty notions about "changing the world." Data is presented in numerous graphs and figures, and 20 references are cited in footnotes. (GEA)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the International Conference on the Development of Civic Responsibility among Youth (Urbino, Italy, October 10, 1988).