In Search of Adolescence: A New Look at an Old Idea ペーパーバック – 2015/9/1
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Is adolescence really a modern cultural construct, as many have claimed? Author and veteran youth worker Crystal Kirgiss began her journey into the history of adolescence when the fourteenth-century Squire of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales caught her eye. Not a boy, not yet a man—the Squire’s classic hallmarks of adolescent attitudes and behaviors pushed her to search further and further into historical literature and documents in search of adolescence. Here Kirgiss offers youth workers a glimpse into the rich history of adolescence from the tenth through the eighteenth century, walking readers through exactly what many deep thinkers, artistic creators, impassioned preachers, and other influencers had to say about this life stage, long before our modern and postmodern incarnations of youth and youth ministry existed.
This book isn't the most in-depth study of such a topic, but I'm not sure such a book is essential. Here she is able to present evidence that shows the truth of her premise, and the freedom that such thinking brings.
The chapter dealing with 'The Preachers' was fascinating, and a great reminder that while preachers of old, like preachers of today, spoke out against the evils of the age and the impact these things were having on youth in particular, the greatest desire of these preachers is to see youth live as disciples of Jesus, not just moral do-gooders.
It's an easy book to read, and one that will have you thinking about how you approach youth in your church. But for those outside the church, it is also an important book presenting a historical perspective on teenage life and how that has been seen through the ages.