From vanguards of revolution to vanguards of consumption: Changing conceptualizations of adolescence in contemporary Vietnam and implications for adolescent/youth services

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Abstract

This historical study analyzes the transformation of the concept ‘adolescence’ in post-war Vietnam (1975–2005) and its implications for social work. Government-regulated media documents show that the concept of adolescence has undergone three phases corresponding to the three political-economic shifts in Vietnam over these decades: adolescents as miniature communists (1975–1986); adolescents as growing youths characterized by romantic sentiments, puberty, and identity search (1986–1995); and adolescents as the newly coined ‘teen Viet’ and vanguards of capitalist consumption (1996–2005). Social work with Vietnamese adolescents and families must consider the impact of these conceptual shifts on thoughts, emotions, and behaviors of corresponding adolescent cohorts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1268-1285
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Social Work
Volume60
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016, © The Author(s) 2016.

Keywords

  • Conceptualization of adolescence
  • international social work
  • Vietnam
  • Vietnamese adolescents
  • youth services

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