How Cultural Differences Influence Adolescent Development
The parents of adolescents have the main responsibility of teaching children ethics. Scholars of adolescent behavior and authors of "Family and Peer Influences on Adolescent Behavior and Risk-Taking," Nancy Gonzales and Kenneth Dodge, note that while much of adolescent development happens outside the home, the culture of the family instills upon children their developmental roots. Parents coming from difference cultures emphasize different value sets and therefore teach their children different moral standards. For example, because honesty is an important concept in the West, American parents urge their children not to lie, even in situations where lying would be beneficial. On the contrary, parents from East Asia tend to focus on creating a sense of both social and family harmony. These parents are more willing to overlook lies, provided those lies contribute to harmony, such as in white lies that avoid hurting others' feelings.
Related: Sociocultural Identity Construction
• Multicultural Literacies