This chapter explores 'mythic' dimensions to youth, and the way they serve as a symbolic focus for wider social debates. It discusses place of gender and ethnicity in moral panics, and reviews reasons for their increasing prominence. In the US, for example, elements of racism have figured prominently in the country's catalogue of moral panics about youth. Representations of youth, however, have never been exclusively negative. Alongside the moral panics and malevolent stereotypes, there have always co-existed more positive media constructions in which young people are presented as the vibrant vanguard of a prosperous future. Indeed, at certain historical moments, media images of youth as a social ‘panacea’ have eclipsed the darker, more apprehensive iconography of youth as a ‘pathology’. The chapter concludes by considering the way youth has sometimes been configured as a totem of economic growth and social progress.