A Tribe Apart: A Journey into the Heart of American Adolescence

968 WordsJul 11, 20184 Pages
A Tribe Apart: A Journey into the Heart of American Adolescence, by Patricia Hersch a. Respond to the scenario that prompted Hersch’s statement that “This kind of tolerance amounts to a new ethic of situational excuses, a hazy sense of right and wrong.” What are the cultural factors at play in this scenario? This book, having been written in 1998, offers an interesting perspective on how much things have changed since that time. Having had the opportunity to work with clients incarcerated in the Department of Community Justice’s Secure Treatment Facility, I have had the benefit of seeing the differences – from then to now – apparent in culturally centered criminal thinking and behavior. Although criminal thinking and behaviors…show more content…
These few questions come to mind, and I’m not at all qualified to analyze them. How might Kohlberg or Giligan respond to this scenario? I see Kohlberg’s Stage 1: “punishment-avoidance and obedience” exhibited quite clearly in the attitudes of the teenagers that disrespected both their peers and the power structure. The same might be said of this behavior in the context of Gilligan’s Stage 1 perception. The old adage that it is not a crime unless you get caught applies quite well here. It appears that the threat of violence dominates the environment, even though the source of this violence is demonstrated by a minority of students. Very little moral reasoning is on display in the hallway of this school and very little is redirection is attempted to enforce a standard of behavior in the hallway. It might be said that the authority figures at this school are also displaying the behavior of Kohlberg and Gilligan’s stage 1 reasoning from a purely defensive standpoint (Hersch, pp. 83–84). b. What observations would you make regarding the cognitive, moral, and social-emotional developmental manifestations of the teen’s reactions occurring here. Does the maxim, “never trust anyone over 30” ring a bell? In American culture at least, a chasm between the generations has always existed to one degree or another. What is frustrating is the apparent disconnect that adults have in light of this paradigm – a cultural anomaly that has been in existence for hundreds

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