First Advisor

Betty M. Hall

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work (MSW)


Social Work




Unmarried mothers, Teenage girls, Emotional maturity



Physical Description

1 online resource (68 p.)


Adolescence traditionally has been recognized and accepted as a period of exploration of an occasional rebellion against the adult world. Explorations are viewed by behavioral scientists as a quest for identity expansion, and as such, a necessary phase for attaining maturity. Several tasks have been identified which each adolescent must complete if he is to reach maturity. For the present these tasks can be summarized as character formation, attainment of sexual identity, establishment of mature relationships and emancipation from parental control.

Society's attitude towards the rebellion and exploitation of youth is mixed. This confusion seems related to a general breakdown in custom, dispensation of child-adolescent labor, and restriction on sexual activity. Perhaps the confusion is particularly noted in relation to the adolescent unwed mother who may be viewed as having violated moral standards.

While America has been from its inception relatively free of entrenched social groups, traditions and values, there were customs and values which served to regulate behavior: curfew, chaperones, maiden aunts in the parlor and mothers in the kitchen.


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A report submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Social Work, Portland State University.

Persistent Identifier