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Early Adult


Early Adult Social and Emotional Development – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Early Adult

Early Adult
  • Social and Emotional Development

Stage vs. Nonstage Views
  • Stage - advancing age is source of change
  • Non-stage - life events drive change
  • View of text

Erikson Intimacy gt Isolation
Erikson on Intimacy
  • Intimacy close heterosexual relationship within
    which procreation can be accomplished
  • Problems
  • Presumes heterosexual relationship
  • Excludes intimacy in friendships
  • Excludes intimacy in childless marriages
  • Intimacy (and therefore marriage) is important
    step in adult development

Erikson on Isolation
  • Failure to develop capacity for sharing with or
    caring about others
  • Relationships superficial, competitive
  • Loneliness, self-absorption
  • Problems
  • Definition does not distinguish isolation from
    its causes
  • One can experience isolation in context of

Critique of Eriksons Theory
  • Research reveals intimacy is of central concern
    in early adulthood
  • Themes of generativity emerge concurrently with
  • Presumes women and men follow same course

Levinsons Seasons of Life (1)
  • Retrospective study
  • 40 middle age men
  • Hourly workers
  • Business executives
  • Biologists
  • Novelists
  • Additional study on small sample of women
  • Intensive interviews and testing

Levinsons Seasons of Life (2)
  • Examines psychological shifts in adulthood
  • Life structures alternative with transitions
  • Structure underlying life pattern or design
  • often relate to work and family
  • Transitions - time for re-appraisal

Levinson (3) Other Key Concepts
  • Dream - image guides decisions
  • Mentor
  • BOOM - Becoming ones own man
  • Timing
  • What about women?

Vallients Study
  • Follow-up of Grant Study
  • Empirical study of Eriksons stages
  • Expands Eriksons views
  • Original Grant Study
  • Sample - 268 normal young men from Harvard

Vallients Adaptation to Life
  • Longitudinal follow-up on original sample
  • Trace change and development throughout life
  • Lives are shaped by quality of relationships
    (rather than trauma)
  • Predictor - adaptive adolescents turn out to be
    more adaptive adults

Vallient Expands Erikson
  • Intimacy gt Isolation
  • Career consolidation (30s)
  • Generativity gt Stagnation
  • Keeping the meaning gt Rigidity (50s)
  • Integrity gt Despair

Critique of Levinson and Vallient
  • Cohort limitations
  • results may not generalize to people today
  • Narrow sample
  • white, male, college educated
  • Retrospective studies
  • How accurate is recollection?
  • Presume males and females more alike than

Adult Female Development
  • Identity appears to continue to emerge in context
    of intimate relationships
  • Multiple variations in timing rather than
    following the pattern of the family life cycle
  • Tensions evident between family commitments and
  • Reappraisal more likely at about age 30 (rather
    than stocktaking at 40)

Gilligan on Female Development
  • Adolescent females struggle to resist loss of
    psychological strengths and positive
    self-concepts of childhood
  • Adulthood is time for recovering confidence,
    assertiveness, and self-confidence

Neugarterns Nonstage Theory
  • Life events mark time
  • Age misleads life experiences are key

Concepts Related to Nonstage View (1)
  • Social clock
  • Influenced by cultural context
  • Current blurring of proper time
  • On time -- Off time
  • Age-graded expectations
  • Cause us to accelerate or to put on the breaks

Concepts Related to Nonstage View (2)
  • Normative events
  • expected
  • on-time
  • anticipated
  • Non-normative
  • unexpected
  • off-time

Schlossberg on Life Change
  • Give me a room full of 40 year olds and you tell
    me nothing. What matters is what transitions
    they have experiences. There are as many
    patterns as people.
  • People react to both events and their timing
  • Back to Unit 4
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