© 2015

Emerging and Young Adulthood

Multiple Perspectives, Diverse Narratives


Part of the Advancing Responsible Adolescent Development book series (ARAD)

About this book


This data-rich volume offers new insights into the transitional period between adolescence and adulthood. It analyzes core concepts typically associated with adolescence, such as identity development, emerging sexuality, deepening relationships, and exploration of career choices as individuals age into their twenties and early thirties. Chapters examine the challenges of self-exploration, responsibilities, and independence as this generation approaches adulthood with deliberation in an uncertain world with vastly different perspectives from that of their parents. And in the tradition of its predecessor, the book's first-person excerpts emphasize and illuminate the diversity of the population and its stakeholders, including parents and employers.

Each chapter is updated and revised to reflect the current literature that has evolved since the first edition was published. Additional chapters address two increasingly important areas of interest: the virtual life of the emerging and young adult; and the career-related challenges emerging and young adults encounter in their search for a vocational home. Rich additional narratives serve to elucidate the terrain emerging and young adults encounter as they begin to establish themselves in the world of work and social and romantic relationships.

Key areas of coverage include: 

  • Identity formation in environmental context
  • Culture: opening paths, creating detours
  • The "tyranny" of choice: re-examining the prevailing narrative
  • Examination of career paths for emerging and young adults
  • Emotional and social lives of emerging and young adults
  • Overlapping and disparate views of employers
  • Mental health issues of emerging and young adults

The Second Edition of Emerging and Young Adulthood is essential reading for researchers, clinicians, therapists and other professionals, and graduate students in developmental, school, and counseling psychology and related social and behavioral sciences.


Affluence and emerging adulthood Career paths for emerging and young adults Clinical practice and emerging and young adults Contextual theoretical model of emerging adulthood Cultural considerations of emerging adulthood Cultural differences and emerging adulthood Depression and anxiety in emerging and young adulthood Developmental trajectories and emerging adulthood External contingencies and emerging adults Friendships and romantic relationships and emerging adults Happiness and emerging adulthood Identity and young and emerging adults Mental health of emerging adults Narrative and emerging adulthood Parental influences and emerging adults Positive psychology and emerging adulthood Social networking and emerging and young adults Social-emotional development of emerging adults Transitioning to young adulthood “Helicopter” parenting and young adults

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.University of Massachusetts BostonBostonUSA

About the authors

Varda Konstam, Ph.D., Professor Emerita at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, in the Counseling and School Psychology Department, brings range and depth to understanding emerging and young adults. Her extensive teaching, research, and clinical background bring focus to the diverse perspective of the major stakeholders – parents, employers, and individuals – who are negotiating their 20s as well as those individuals who have newly emerged from this decade. Dr. Konstam weaves a tapestry that is grounded in research, nuanced in capturing the voices of multiple stakeholders, and provides guidance for understanding and navigating new patterns of behavior associated with people in their 20s. She has published more than 30 articles and two books on emerging adults.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Emerging and Young Adulthood
  • Book Subtitle Multiple Perspectives, Diverse Narratives
  • Authors Varda Konstam
  • Series Title Advancing Responsible Adolescent Development
  • Series Abbreviated Title Advs Responsible Adolescent Devel.
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Behavioral Science Behavioral Science and Psychology (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-11300-5
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-319-33077-8
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-11301-2
  • Series ISSN 2195-089X
  • Series E-ISSN 2195-0903
  • Edition Number 2
  • Number of Pages XII, 222
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Child and School Psychology
    Social Work
    Educational Psychology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


"A wonderful read that provides a detailed qualitative picture of the lives of a group of emerging adults in the U.S as well as an overview of the broader scientific literature. This volume highlights the heterogeneity in the lives of individuals in this age-group. This new edition includes timely additions of new chapters on technology and work careers."

Manfred H. M. van Dulmen, Ph.D.
Kent State University


"From authors to scholars to the media, a lot of people have had much to say in recent years about emerging and young adults. Noticeably absent in nearly all of this work has been the voice of young people themselves.  Much has been said (much of it negative) about young people putting off adulthood in favor of selfish pursuits.  Again, however, very few opportunities have been given to young people to give "their side of the story."  The genius of this book is that the complexity of entering, developing through, and leaving the third decade of life is captured via the actual lives of young people. Dr. Konstam not only presents the most important and best scholarship on emerging and young adults but brings it to life via excerpts from interviews with dozens of young people from a variety of backgrounds and experiences. The result is a brilliant empirical book that not only describes what scholars know about young people but does so while also allowing us to hear from young people."
Larry J. Nelson, Ph.D.
School of Family Life
2091 JFSB
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT  84602


“Dr. Konstam’s book brings emerging adulthood to life through the voices of young people and those who interact with them. Through their stories we learn about the ways in which emerging adulthood plays out differently across cultural, gender, family, and socioeconomic contexts. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in the emerging adult age period.”

Seth J. Schwartz, Ph.D.
Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine
University of Miami