English title: Young, wild and free? The social and cultural context of adolescent risk behavior

Author(s): Margaretha de Looze -

Language: English

Type: Thesis / dissertation

Year: 2013

Abstract

Adolescence, the transitional phase between childhood and adulthood, is a unique period of discovery and experimentation. It is a complex but exciting phase of life during whichyoung people gradually develop into adults. Physically, adolescents experience many changes, including changes in sexual characteristics. In terms of social relationships, their focus shifts from their family to their peers. While desiring more autonomy and freedom to make their own choices and decisions, adolescents typically distance themselves from their parents and start spending more time with peers (Meeus, Iedema, Maassen, & Engels, 2005), for example at school, while playing sports, or during leisure activities at night in bars and pubs. In the course of this process, many adolescents start experimenting with tobacco, alcohol, and cannabis use as well as sexual activities. The present thesis aimed to investigate socio-cultural factors that may influence substance use and sexual behaviors among adolescents in Europe and North America.

Type/degree:

Awarding institution: Utrecht University

Number of pages: 312

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