Sternheimer has examined the powerful shaping influence of US print media articles on youth and linked these perceptions to policy and community reaction to youth. Her analysis of newspaper articels reveals perceived youth characteristics―dangerous, subject to physical harm, gluttonous, misbehaving school students, stupid, easily seduced into deviant behavior―as essential components justifying US adult fear of youth. . . . Sternheimer challenges these misperceptions with the available evidence arising from natiaonal research and critical thinking, and details the impact of socioecnomic class stratification and gender. Highly recommended. (CHOICE
)Kids These Days
makes a critically needed contribution to our understanding of modern youth and their distorted image in the popular media. It is both intellectually stimulating and accessible to a wide variety of readers, including youths themselves. There is an avalanche of perfectly awful, same-themed books by popular and academic authors…[Sternheimer] takes a radically different approach and has produced a book that freshens this stifling, sterile climate with dramatically new information. I believe it is ahead of its time… and could well generate the kind of attention Culture of Fear
received. I would recommend it without hesitation as a text or popular work that documents, analyzes, and challenges the destructive myths about 'kids today.' (Mike Males, University of California, Santa Cruz)
About the Author
Karen Sternheimer teaches in the sociology department at the University of Southern California. She is the author of It's Not the Media: The Truth About Pop Culture's Influence on Kids.