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System KidsAdolescent Mothers and the Politics of Regulation$
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Lauren J. Silver

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469622590

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469622590.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

The Real Responsibility Is on You!

The Real Responsibility Is on You!

The Self-Sufficiency Trap

(p.77) Chapter Three The Real Responsibility Is on You!
System Kids

Lauren J. Silver

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter looks closely at how young mothers have presented their identities during official negotiations. The youth seemed to have been aware of the need to appear worthy of public investment and capable of self-reform. Particularly when clients have been afraid of being discharged, they have attempted to align their identities with official expectations. Ideologies of self-sufficiency complicate and compromise open, flexible, and fluid identities. These youth are in the process of becoming; they learn who they are and who they will be through interacting with others. Punitive and shortsighted representations become mirrors in which the youth reflect back what they see, if they do not contest the images outright. In the formal service situations described in this chapter, the youth have been especially careful to maintain the impressions of their regulators.

Keywords:   young mothers, official negotiations, self-sufficiency, youth, self-reform, public investment

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