Knowledge and use of developmental thinking about societies and families among teenagers in Argentina

Georgina Binstock, Centro de Estudios de PoblaciĆ³n
Arland Thornton, University of Michigan

The paper is motivated by the hypothesis that the ideas of societal development and modernity have been widely disseminated and have been especially important in changing family life in much of the world. Based on focus group and survey data collected among urban and rural teenagers in Argentina in 2003-2004, we evaluate the extent they understand and adhere to the ideas of centuries of developmental thinking, and use these ideas in evaluating the world in general, and family behavior in particular. The results indicate that most teenagers have a great level of familiarity and knowledge of the developmental model, and they also show extensive expertise with the application of developmental ideas to evaluate and characterize societies and family organizations, providing valuable evidence that developmental thinking has been widely disseminated.. However, developmental ideas are just one of the various frameworks Argentinean teenagers use to evaluate family organizations, behaviors, and change.

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Presented in Poster Session 1