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Paperback Understanding Today's Youth Culture Book

ISBN: 0842377395

ISBN13: 9780842377393

Understanding Today's Youth Culture

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Book Overview

1995 Gold Medallion Award winner! Teens today face tough issues and tough choices. Parents and youth leaders can make a difference by really understanding the culture in which teens live. Without such understanding, attempts to provide direction may not be heard and may even be misguided. Understanding Today's Youth Culture is a complete guide for parents, teachers, and youth leaders on music and the media, sex, peer pressure, substance abuse, cyberspace...

Customer Reviews

3 ratings

Good Reading

For me this book was somewhat of a revelation on what I went through during my teen years. I am sure this book would have helped my parents deal with what I went through a great deal had they read it while I was in high school. In this book, Mueller attempts to show parents, youth workers, and anyone who cares about teens what they are experiencing during those tumultuous years between thirteen and nineteen. Mueller introduces his reader to the material aiming mostly at parents of teenagers; this required me as a reader to always be asking how does this affect my ministry, or my students. While this was mostly helpful it would generally be a better guide for parents than youth workers. He then goes on to talk about teens and how they are influenced by music, the media, and how parents should help their teens navigate through this complicated web of adolescence. Although a little bit out of step with today's fads, Mueller's points hit the right chords and can still be applied today. I again found myself having to switch my frame of reference to make the examples current. The author then dives into looking at what pressures teens face today from peer pressure, to love and relationships including sex, and popular culture as a whole. He turns from those topics into drug and substance abuse and depression and the state of teen's psyche. Mueller brings his book together in a fairly good fashion by helping to show parents how to point their children towards Christ. I really enjoyed how Mueller had practical ideas for parents at the end of each chapter. There is nothing worse than a book on a topic that does not offer practical advice, but Mueller did not leave this important part out. I would like to use Muller's practical opinions on the media and its influence on teens to do a Sunday school series on how the media can influence teens and what they need to do to be aware of what is swirling around them at all times. I think we underestimate the power of the media and Mueller softly reminds us of how we need to be vigilant as to what we put into our heads, consciously or unconsciously. The author's practical applications prodded this reader to look at where I could make a small dent in these influences, or at least make my students more aware of what is going on around them. I did find the statistics the author used to be somewhat closed to the evangelical community. I think in order to have a more balanced use of evidence Muller could have opened his eyes up to some more secular statistics and surveys, hopefully to balance out the information he received. In general this book was helpful and practical. I would recommend it to parents of students in my youth group, with the simple caveat of changing the examples to current examples as much as possible.

A must-have for parents, teachers, anyone working with kids

Walt's book is a must have for anyone who is working with young people - whether they are parents, teachers, youth pastors, coaches, etc. This book contains a very balanced, level-headed approach to youth culture, going way beyond the surface. Walt takes a much-needed hard look at the reasons kids engage various media. Anyone struggling to make sense of the adolescent sub-culture will appreciate Walt's window into a world too many people ignore. One of the best features of the book is the way the author weaves in issues of adolescent development and spirituality into the discussions about youth culture and the problems facing many kids. Parents will especially appreciate the way Walt provides some "hands on" ways of constructively interacting with their children.

One of the best overviews of American youth culture.

Obviously, the person who wrote the above evaluation has his doctorate of youth culture studies and therefore, didn't gain much from the book. I read the book as a youth worker of 19 years and father of 4 teenage sons. The book not only grasps what is means to be an adolescent but how both parents and youth workers can benefit. The thing I enjoy most about the book is that it accurately describes what many of our Canadian youth are going through as well. It is mandatory reading in the Youth Culture classes that I teach in Toronto and recommended reading for all the parents that I deal with in the parenting adolescent seminars that I teach. The key to the greatness of the book is for youth workers and parents alike to apply what they have learned. Unlike the evaluator above, I am not afraid to leave my name.
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