Coming of Age in Samoa  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Coming of Age in Samoa, first published in 1928, is a book by Margaret Mead based upon youth in Samoa and lightly relating to youth in America. Mead's findings seemed to show that youth in Samoa are taught to grow together and strengthen the confidence of each other. As a result, their community is much more tightly knit than that of other cultures, and the individuals themselves are more emotionally secure. In contrast, American youth are taught to compete against each other, leaving them isolated within their own cliques. The book also put forward the thesis that Samoan teenagers (with greater sexual permissiveness) suffered less psychological stress than American teenagers (with stricter sexual

morals). In it:

"[s]he emphatically criticized the neurosis-inducing nuclear family, including the stress of Christian monogamy, and used her Samoan material to demonstrate an alternative to premarital chastity..."

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