The topic of adolescent development in Europe is one which has received little academic attention in recent years. Developmental Tasks in Adolescence makes an exciting contribution to the field by applying socialisation theory to four major developmental tasks of life: Qualifying, Bonding, Consumption and Participation, arguing that if the tasks in these areas are mastered, then personal individuation and social integration can take place, a prerequisite for the formation of self-identity.
In highly developed societies, adolescence encompasses a period of about 15 years on average. Puberty, or the transition from childhood, starts earlier and earlier, and the transition to adulthood is increasingly postponed. Developmental Tasks in Adolescence proposes that the way in which adolescents master the tasks of everyday life has become a pattern of orientation for the life stages which follow because of the new lifestyle requirements that are typical for modern democratic societies. Today, a life full of uncertainties and ambiguities is no longer limited to adolescence, but rather continues into adulthood.
Hurrelmann and Quenzel's sociological approachis valuable reading for students and academics in psychology, sociology, education, social work and youth studies, and for those on professional training courses in these fields.