“Can't you see the courage, the strength that I have?”: Listening to Urban Adolescent Girls Speak about Their Relationships

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Abstract

This study explored, qualitatively, the ways in which 12 urban, poor and working-class adolescent girls spoke about themselves, their relationships, and their school over a 3 year period. The ability to be outspoken or to “speak one's mind” in relationships was identified as the most prevalent theme in their interviews. Ten of the 12 adolescent girls indicated that they were able to speak openly and honestly in many of their relationships. These outspoken voices were focused not only on expressing anger and disagreement in relationships, but also on voicing care and connection. Seven of the adolescents indicated, however, that while they were outspoken in their relationships with parents, teachers, and female friends, they were not willing to “speak their minds” in their relationships with boys. These findings raise critical questions regarding the psychology of girls and women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-128
Number of pages22
JournalPsychology of Women Quarterly
Volume19
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)

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