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The rights and duties of post-adolescent daughters: Daughters' and parents' accounts

Author(s): Kuhar Metka

Journal: Sociologija
ISSN 0038-0318

Volume: 50;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 391;
Date: 2008;
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Keywords: post-adolescence | family relations | family rights and duties | Slovenia

The article deals with the conceptualisation and negotiation of post-adolescent daughters' rights and duties in their families of origin. More and more young Europeans and particularly many young Slovenians are staying with their parents in the post-adolescence period (and even later) or come home from their university city every weekend. This means that two adult generations live together in the same household; so they have to negotiate the rights and duties of the younger generation in different areas, from very personal domains (e.g. appearance) to more far-reaching life decisions (e.g. the post-study life situation, moving out of the parental home). The study provides at least a partial insight into the processes involved in the negotiation of rights and duties in families with post-adolescent daughters. The data stem from semi-structured interviews conducted in autumn 2006 in Slovenia with 70 first-born post-adolescent girls and both of their biological parents. The respondents answered closed- and open-ended questions referring to four vignettes suggesting controversial situations. The answers allow a view of the conceptualisations of post-adolescents' rights and duties, the distribution of decision-making power and the way of dealing with such situations. The results show that post-adolescent daughters are very dependent on their parents in various areas. It turned out that the contemporary Slovenian family with post-adolescent daughters is prepared to negotiate: patterns of intrafamilial communication range from the traditionally grounded commanding pattern where children have to obey unequivocally (but less than 10% of parents resort to the bare use of authority), to an open, active negotiation pattern where the balance of power is more equal and the achievement of consensus is very important.
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