ERIC Number: ED371250
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993
Building Self: Adolescent Girls and Self-Esteem. Working Paper 2.
This working paper explores current thinking about self-esteem in adolescent girls in a pluralistic or multicultural society. A large percentage of current discussion and research on gender, adolescence, and self-esteem overlooks the diversity among females and neglects to analyze how various identities interweave with gender and strongly influence self-esteem in women. The paper contains the following chapters: (1) Defining, Measuring, and Other Issues in Research; (2) Race, Class, and Other Identities in Young Women's Search for Self; (3) The Role of Sexism in Self-Esteem; (4) Developing Resistance and Resilience; and (5) Conclusion. The chapter discussing defining and measuring notes that there is not a clear definition of self-esteem and that a number of factors are part of this complex concept. The chapter about sexism summarizes gender based violence, schools and education, public and private discourse, the developing female body, and media representation and influence. The chapter about resistance and resilience reviews naming and externalizing bias, transforming schools for multicultural history and perspectives, connection with the community, role models and mentors, high expectations, overcoming barriers and developing skills. The paper concludes with the proposition that self-esteem in girls can be enhanced in two ways. The first is systemically changing the cultural institutions and thought that devalue women. The second is raising strong young women who can balance their strengths and weaknesses and live to their highest potential. (KM)
Descriptors: Adolescents, Ethnic Groups, Family Attitudes, Females, Secondary Education, Self Esteem, Sex Role, Sex Stereotypes, Sexual Identity
Women's Educational Equity Act Publishing Center, Education Development Center, Inc., 55 Chapel St., Newton, MA 02160.
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Education Development Center, Inc., Newton, MA. Center for Equity and Cultural Diversity.