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Chapter 9. What is Autonomy? Independence An individual’s capacity to behave on his or her own Autonomy Emotional components (feeling separate from parents)

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 9. What is Autonomy? Independence An individual’s capacity to behave on his or her own Autonomy Emotional components (feeling separate from parents)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 9

2 What is Autonomy? Independence An individual’s capacity to behave on his or her own Autonomy Emotional components (feeling separate from parents) Behavioral components (the growth of independent decision making) Cognitive components (developing personal beliefs and values) 2

3 Autonomy Development in Modern Society Today’s teens spend much more time away from the direct supervision of adults than prior generations But today’s teens also have become more economically reliant on their families than prior generations 3

4 Why Is Autonomy an Adolescent Issue? Erik Erikson’s Theory Autonomy is the central issue of toddlerhood Identity is the central issue of adolescence However, early adolescence is another period of growing independence and autonomy Establishing healthy sense of autonomy is actually a lifelong process 4

5 Three Types of Autonomy Emotional Autonomy Gaining emotional independence in relationships with others, especially parents Behavioral Autonomy Making independent decisions and following through on them Value Autonomy Developing an independent set of beliefs and principles, resisting peer and parental pressures 5

6 Development of Emotional Autonomy Psychoanalytic Theory: Anna Freud Physical changes of puberty disrupt family system Resurgence of sexual impulses increase family tensions Detachment: Adolescents are driven to separate emotionally from parents Conflict is normal part of detachment in adolescence 6

7 Development of Emotional Autonomy Modern Theories: Individuation Process of individuation begins during infancy Does not involve stress or turmoil Acceptance of responsibility for choices and actions Measure emotional autonomy by examining: Extent to which teens deidealize parents Extent to which teens see parents as people Nondependency (the extent to which adolescents depend on themselves, rather than on parents) Extent to which the adolescent feels individuated within the relationship with his/her parents 7

8 Development of Emotional Autonomy What triggers individuation? Changes in teen’s appearance provoke changes in how teen views self and how parents view teen. This alters parent-adolescent interactions Social-cognitive development stimulates movement toward individuation 8

9 9 Age differences in four aspects of emotional autonomy

10 Development of Emotional Autonomy Emotional Autonomy and Parenting Practices Healthy individuation and positive mental health are fostered by close, not distant, family relationships Conditions that encourage both individuation and emotional closeness facilitate autonomy 10

11 Development of Behavioral Autonomy Changes in Decision- Making Abilities How do decision making abilities improve from 7th to 12th grade? Older adolescents showed more sophisticated abilities in: awareness of risks considering future consequences turning to a consultant recognizing vested interests 11

12 Development of Behavioral Autonomy Changes in susceptibility to influence Conformity to peers is higher during early and middle adolescence Parents are more influential regarding long-term issues, basic values Peers’ opinions are more influential for day-to-day matters (music tastes or clothing style) 12

13 Development of Behavioral Autonomy Changes in Feelings of Self-Reliance Adolescent girls report feeling more self-reliant than adolescent boys do Adolescents who have a stronger sense of self-reliance report having higher self-esteem fewer behavior problems 13

14 The Development of Value Autonomy Moral Reasoning Development How individuals think about moral dilemmas and make moral judgments Lawrence Kohlberg’s Theory Used morally challenging stories (Heinz) More interested in the reasoning behind people’s explanations than whether the answer was right or wrong 14

15 The Development of Value Autonomy KOHLBERG’S THREE LEVELS OF MORAL REASONING Preconventional Moral Reasoning (worrying about punishment/reward) Conventional Moral Reasoning (following societal rules and norms) Postconventional Moral Reasoning (most abstract and advanced) 15

16 The Development of Value Autonomy Moral Development during Adolescence Research has shown that moral behavior does not always match moral reasoning Contextual factors influence how a person acts when facing moral dilemmas in the real world Carol Gilligan Argues against Kohlberg, says his theory is gender- biased Women may use a care orientation to moral dilemmas Men may use a justice orientation However, research does not support Gilligan’s argument 16

17 The Heinz Dilemma Was it right or wrong for Heinz to steal the drug for his wife? Would your answer be considered preconventional, conventional, postconventional?

18 In Class Exercise 1. a 25-year-old black militant who graduated from Harvard 2. a Mexican farmer, illegally in the United States 3. a homosexual football star 4. a middle-aged religious fanatic, mother of two teenagers 5. an attractive lesbian, occupation M.D. 6. a sorority girl majoring in fashion merchandise 7. a male radical hippie working as an environmental ecologist 8. a 59-year-old female community leader 9. a call girl 10. an obese and balding politician 11. a drug dealer from an upper-class family 12. a mildly retarded male teenager who is a musical genius 13. a handicapped telephone operator 14. a male midget

19 Based on what you’ve read… Use info from text to support your answers Does emotional autonomy necessarily mean cutting off emotional ties with parents? How does peer pressure fit into the concepts of behavior and value autonomy? According to research, how much of an impact does peer pressure have on behavior/value autonomy during adolescence?

20 The Development of Value Autonomy Prosocial Reasoning, Behavior, and Volunteerism: Prosocial behavior (helping others) Prosocial reasoning becomes more sophisticated But changes in actual prosocial behavior, such as helping others or empathizing with others, are not consistently found in adolescence Involvement in community service leads to Gains in social responsibility Gains in tolerance Increases in the importance that individuals place on the importance of helping others 20

21 The Development of Value Autonomy Political Thinking Becomes more abstract Becomes less authoritarian and less rigid Becomes more principled (an increase in a consistent set of attitudes; an ideology) 21

22 The Development of Value Autonomy Religious Beliefs Become more abstract, more principled, and more independent during the adolescent years The stated importance of religion—and participation in an organized religion— declines somewhat during the adolescent years 22

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