Growing Up in America: The Power of Race in the Lives of Teens
Ive been hearing a bit recently about a new book based on the data from Christian Smiths National Study of Youth and Religion. The book, Growing Up in America: The Power of Race in the Lives of Teens, by Brad Christerson, Korie L. Edwards, and Richard Flory looks at how race impacts teenagers.
This is a great book, one I can wholeheartedly recommend to those interested in race and kids (which I hope means all of us). Im going to unpack some of its most salient points in future blogs, but for now, Ill give you the big picture.
The intent of the book is to ask: Does society differentially invest in youth of different racial and class backgrounds, thereby predisposing them to follow certain paths and fulfill particular societal roles? In other words, are white, African-American, Latino, and Asian-American youth socialized in different ways?
The overwhelming answer from their research is yes, especially when examined in 4 key social institutions: the family, peers, school, and religion. Ill take a look at each of these institutions in the next 4 blogs.
Part of what I love about this book is that it celebrates the assets and liabilities of various racial groups socialization. In other words, each race has been socialized in ways that help as well as ways that hurt. Ill even say that each race tends to be socialized in ways that both reflect Kingdom values as well as counter them.
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