How cultures define adulthood vary dramatically. For some, adulthood may be religious celebration milestones and for others it may be based on a physical change or event. In still others, it may be based on legal factors such as, chronological age or marital status.
For this Discussion, you will explore cultures and factors that establish adulthood. Also, you will examine the value and limitations of utilizing indicators to define adulthood.
In multiple cultures, marriage is considered a definitive transition to adulthood. Marriage is part of adulthood’s family capacity criteria, reflecting collectivistic values in cultures (Jansen and Arnett,94). Marriage symbolizes a mutual commitment between two individuals from different families (Hemez, 2018, pp.19). Both African American and Latino cultures associate marriage with emerging adulthood in men and women (Killian (2017, pp.232). From both cultures, with marriage comes additional responsibilities that are linked to gender roles. For instance, married men have added the obligation to provide for their new family. Meanwhile, married women have added the responsibility to care for their spouse and their children.
Marriage remains an essential milestone among African Americans and Latinos. Among African Americans and Latinos, marriage is a varying aspect influenced by multiple factors, including interactive, cultural, structural, and individual elements. According to Kilian (2017 pp,.232), the shift in cultural trends of marriage among African Americans impacts the likelihood of getting married. One cultural trend is women’s independence, whereby Black women are embracing the freedom of being independent and not relying on men as spelled out in their traditions. The shift from familism to individualism is a potential limitation, influencing individuals from these cultures to opt not to marry.
The value of materialism limiting through popular culture is influencing people’s perception of marriage. Killian (2017, pp.232) suggests that people are neither willing to commit to a relationship that leads to marriage, nor are they ready to sustain these marriages. Divorce is a common outcome in most marriages among both American and Latino cultures. Regardless, marriage is still considered an indicator of adulthood among those who embrace traditions that advocate for the institution of marriage.
Hemez, P. (2018). Young adulthood: Cohabitation, birth, and marriage experiences. Family Profiles, FP-18-22. Bowling Green, OH: National Center for Family & Marriage Research. https://doi.org/10.25035/ncfmr/fp-18-22.
Killian, M. (2017). Soul Mates: Religion, Sex, Love, and Marriage among African Americans and Latinos.