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Ephebiphobia

Ephebiphobia

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The fear of youth
Youth
Youth is the time of life between childhood and adulthood . Definitions of the specific age range that constitutes youth vary. An individual's actual maturity may not correspond to their chronological age, as immature individuals could exist at all ages.-Usage:Around the world, the terms "youth",...

is called ephebiphobia. First coined as the "fear and loathing of teenagers," today the phenomenon
Phenomenon
A phenomenon , plural phenomena, is any observable occurrence. Phenomena are often, but not always, understood as 'appearances' or 'experiences'...

 is recognized as the "inaccurate, exaggerated and sensational characterization of young people" in a range of settings around the world. Studies of the fear of youth occur in sociology
Sociology
Sociology is the study of society. It is a social science—a term with which it is sometimes synonymous—which uses various methods of empirical investigation and critical analysis to develop a body of knowledge about human social activity...

 and youth studies
Youth studies
Youth studies is an interdisciplinary academic field devoted to the study of the development, history, culture, psychology, and politics of youth. The field studies not only specific cultures of young people, but also their relationships, roles and responsibilities throughout the larger societies...

.

Coinage


The word ephebiphobia is formed from the Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

  (éphēbos
Ephebos
Ephebos , also anglicised as ephebe or archaically ephebus , is a Greek word for an adolescent age group or a social status reserved for that age in Antiquity....

), meaning "youth
Youth
Youth is the time of life between childhood and adulthood . Definitions of the specific age range that constitutes youth vary. An individual's actual maturity may not correspond to their chronological age, as immature individuals could exist at all ages.-Usage:Around the world, the terms "youth",...

" or "adolescent" and (phóbos), meaning "fear" or "phobia
Phobia
A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder, usually defined as a persistent fear of an object or situation in which the sufferer commits to great lengths in avoiding, typically disproportional to the actual danger posed, often being recognized as irrational...

". The coinage of this term is attributed to a 1994 article by Kirk Astroth published in Phi Delta Kappan. Today, common usage occurs internationally by sociologists, government agencies, and youth advocacy organizations that define ephebiphobia as an abnormal or irrational and persistent fear
Fear
Fear is a distressing negative sensation induced by a perceived threat. It is a basic survival mechanism occurring in response to a specific stimulus, such as pain or the threat of danger...

 and/or loathing of teenagers or adolescence
Adolescence
Adolescence is a transitional stage of physical and mental human development generally occurring between puberty and legal adulthood , but largely characterized as beginning and ending with the teenage stage...

.

Similar terms


The term paedophobia has gained popular acceptance in Europe to describe the aforementioned "fear of youth". Pediaphobia is the fear of infants and children. Using this term to categorize fear of youth may dismiss the unique social position that youth occupy. Hebephobia (from the Greek , hḗbē, "youth, puberty") has also been proposed. Similar terms include adultism
Adultism
Adultism has been defined as "the power adults have over children". More narrowly, 'adultism is prejudice and accompanying systematic discrimination against young people'...

, which is a predisposition towards adults that is biased against children and youth, and ageism
Ageism
Ageism, also called age discrimination is stereotyping of and discrimination against individuals or groups because of their age. It is a set of beliefs, attitudes, norms, and values used to justify age based prejudice, discrimination, and subordination...

, which describes discrimination against any person because of their age.

History


The fear of youth, along with fear of street culture
Street culture
Street culture may refer to:* Street market* Children's street culture* Street carnival* Street identity* Cafe culture*Several topics pertaining to outdoors youth subculture or counterculture of urban centers. These can include street art, street dance, street sports and hip-hop culture....

 and the fear of crime
Fear of crime
The fear of crime refers to the fear of being a victim of crime as opposed to the actual probability of being a victim of crime.The fear of crime, along with fear of the streets and the fear of youth, is said to have been in Western culture for "time immemorial"...

, is said to have been in Western culture
Western culture
Western culture, sometimes equated with Western civilization or European civilization, refers to cultures of European origin and is used very broadly to refer to a heritage of social norms, ethical values, traditional customs, religious beliefs, political systems, and specific artifacts and...

 for "time immemorial". Machiavelli is said to have realized that a fear of youth is what kept the city of Florence
Florence
Florence is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany and of the province of Florence. It is the most populous city in Tuscany, with approximately 370,000 inhabitants, expanding to over 1.5 million in the metropolitan area....

 from keeping a standing army. Ancient Venice
Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 and ancient Greece
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

 are also said to have had floundering public policy because of their fear of youth.

Early American Puritan
Puritan
The Puritans were a significant grouping of English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries. Puritanism in this sense was founded by some Marian exiles from the clergy shortly after the accession of Elizabeth I of England in 1558, as an activist movement within the Church of England...

ism has been seen as reliant on a fear of youth, who were seen as embodying adventure
Adventure
An adventure is defined as an exciting or unusual experience; it may also be a bold, usually risky undertaking, with an uncertain outcome. The term is often used to refer to activities with some potential for physical danger, such as skydiving, mountain climbing and or participating in extreme sports...

 and enlightenment, and therefore were viewed as susceptible to "decadent morality
Morality
Morality is the differentiation among intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are good and bad . A moral code is a system of morality and a moral is any one practice or teaching within a moral code...

." During the Industrial Revolution
Industrial Revolution
The Industrial Revolution was a period from the 18th to the 19th century where major changes in agriculture, manufacturing, mining, transportation, and technology had a profound effect on the social, economic and cultural conditions of the times...

 Western Europe
Western Europe
Western Europe is a loose term for the collection of countries in the western most region of the European continents, though this definition is context-dependent and carries cultural and political connotations. One definition describes Western Europe as a geographic entity—the region lying in the...

 and North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 popular media was particularly driven to propagate the fear of children
Fear of children
Fear of children, fear of infants or fear of childhood is alternatively called pedophobia, paedophobia or pediaphobia. Other age-focused fears are ephebiphobia and gerontophobia...

 and youth in order to further the industrialization of schooling, and eventually to remove young people from the workplace when their labor
Child labor
Child labour refers to the employment of children at regular and sustained labour. This practice is considered exploitative by many international organizations and is illegal in many countries...

 became unnecessary due to mechanization
Mechanization
Mechanization or mechanisation is providing human operators with machinery that assists them with the muscular requirements of work or displaces muscular work. In some fields, mechanization includes the use of hand tools...

 and the influx of new labor.

Post-World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 was said to have been stricken by concern for mal de jeunesse when they created policies that reflected their fear of youth. "Send them to summer camps, place others in reformatories, the rest should have some fresh air, build some athletic fields..." were the intentions of youth policies in that era. Following World War II the United States military identified the growing number of youth in the Deep South
Deep South
The Deep South is a descriptive category of the cultural and geographic subregions in the American South. Historically, it is differentiated from the "Upper South" as being the states which were most dependent on plantation type agriculture during the pre-Civil War period...

 as a problematic scenario for national security
National security
National security is the requirement to maintain the survival of the state through the use of economic, diplomacy, power projection and political power. The concept developed mostly in the United States of America after World War II...

. Analysts have suggested the upswing in the popular culture's fear of youth may be attributed to defense policies created in response to that threat.

"In the 1990s public fear of adolescents mounted," caused by the, "increased youth access to handgun
Handgun
A handgun is a firearm designed to be held and operated by one hand. This characteristic differentiates handguns as a general class of firearms from long guns such as rifles and shotguns ....

s, the syndicatization
Syndicate
A syndicate is a self-organizing group of individuals, companies or entities formed to transact some specific business, or to promote a common interest or in the case of criminals, to engage in organized crime...

 of territorial youth gang
Gang
A gang is a group of people who, through the organization, formation, and establishment of an assemblage, share a common identity. In current usage it typically denotes a criminal organization or else a criminal affiliation. In early usage, the word gang referred to a group of workmen...

s into illegal drug cartel
Drug cartel
Drug cartels are criminal organizations developed with the primary purpose of promoting and controlling drug trafficking operations. They range from loosely managed agreements among various drug traffickers to formalized commercial enterprises. The term was applied when the largest trafficking...

s, racist stereotyping
Stereotype
A stereotype is a popular belief about specific social groups or types of individuals. The concepts of "stereotype" and "prejudice" are often confused with many other different meanings...

 of urban youth, academic and political pandering, media frenzy, and a spate of high-profile school shootings of students by their fellow students." The Seattle Weekly
Seattle Weekly
Seattle Weekly is a freely distributed newspaper in Seattle, Washington, United States. It was founded by Darrell Oldham and David Brewster as The Weekly...

 specifically cited the fear of youth as the driving factor behind Seattle, Washington
Seattle, Washington
Seattle is the county seat of King County, Washington. With 608,660 residents as of the 2010 Census, Seattle is the largest city in the Northwestern United States. The Seattle metropolitan area of about 3.4 million inhabitants is the 15th largest metropolitan area in the country...

's now-defunct Teen Dance Ordinance
Teen Dance Ordinance
The Teen Dance Ordinance was a controversial Seattle law which severely curtailed the ability of concert and club promoters to hold events for underaged patrons. During its existence from 1985 to 2002, it was routinely criticized for its severity and its effects on the local music scene and industry...

. The government of Prime Minister Tony Blair
Tony Blair
Anthony Charles Lynton Blair is a former British Labour Party politician who served as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 2 May 1997 to 27 June 2007. He was the Member of Parliament for Sedgefield from 1983 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007...

 introduced the Anti-Social Behaviour Order
Anti-Social Behaviour Order
An Anti-Social Behaviour Order or ASBO is a civil order made against a person who has been shown, on the balance of evidence, to have engaged in anti-social behaviour. The orders, introduced in the United Kingdom by Prime Minister Tony Blair in 1998, were designed to correct minor incidents that...

 in 1998, which has also been attributed directly to a fear of youth.

Causes


Media
Mass media
Mass media refers collectively to all media technologies which are intended to reach a large audience via mass communication. Broadcast media transmit their information electronically and comprise of television, film and radio, movies, CDs, DVDs and some other gadgets like cameras or video consoles...

, marketers, politicians, youth work
Youth work
In the United Kingdom youth work is the process of creating an environment where young people can engage in informal educational activities. Different varieties of youth work include centre-based work, detached work, school-based work and religion based work....

ers and researchers have been implicated in perpetuating the fear of youth. Their fear may be caused by access: in developed countries
Developed country
A developed country is a country that has a high level of development according to some criteria. Which criteria, and which countries are classified as being developed, is a contentious issue...

 around the world young people can find entertainment, communication and information, and because that is so different from previous generations. Since young people in these countries are expected to stay out of the workforce, any role for them outside that of consumer
Consumer
Consumer is a broad label for any individuals or households that use goods generated within the economy. The concept of a consumer occurs in different contexts, so that the usage and significance of the term may vary.-Economics and marketing:...

 is potentially threatening to adults. Selling safety to parents and teachers has also been a driving force, as home security systems, cellphones, and computer surveillance
Computer surveillance
Computer surveillance is the act of performing surveillance of computer activity, and of data stored on a hard drive or being transferred over the Internet....

 usage is marketed to parents; and x-ray
X-ray
X-radiation is a form of electromagnetic radiation. X-rays have a wavelength in the range of 0.01 to 10 nanometers, corresponding to frequencies in the range 30 petahertz to 30 exahertz and energies in the range 120 eV to 120 keV. They are shorter in wavelength than UV rays and longer than gamma...

 machines, metal detector
Metal detector
A metal detector is a device which responds to metal that may not be readily apparent.The simplest form of a metal detector consists of an oscillator producing an alternating current that passes through a coil producing an alternating magnetic field...

s and closed-circuit television
Closed-circuit television
Closed-circuit television is the use of video cameras to transmit a signal to a specific place, on a limited set of monitors....

 are increasingly sold to schools on the premise that young people are not to be trusted. These steps are in spite of the fact that experience consistently shows that monitoring youth does little to prevent violence or tragedy: the Columbine High School massacre
Columbine High School massacre
The Columbine High School massacre occurred on Tuesday, April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School in Columbine, an unincorporated area of Jefferson County, Colorado, United States, near Denver and Littleton. Two senior students, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, embarked on a massacre, killing 12...

 occurred in a building with video surveillance and in-building police.

The very creation of the terms youth
Youth
Youth is the time of life between childhood and adulthood . Definitions of the specific age range that constitutes youth vary. An individual's actual maturity may not correspond to their chronological age, as immature individuals could exist at all ages.-Usage:Around the world, the terms "youth",...

, adolescence
Adolescence
Adolescence is a transitional stage of physical and mental human development generally occurring between puberty and legal adulthood , but largely characterized as beginning and ending with the teenage stage...

 and teenager have all been attributed to the fear of youth. As the western world
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

 became more industrialized, young people were increasingly driven from the workforce
Workforce
The workforce is the labour pool in employment. It is generally used to describe those working for a single company or industry, but can also apply to a geographic region like a city, country, state, etc. The term generally excludes the employers or management, and implies those involved in...

, including involuntary
Child labor
Child labour refers to the employment of children at regular and sustained labour. This practice is considered exploitative by many international organizations and is illegal in many countries...

 and voluntary positions, and into increasingly total institution
Total institution
A total institution is place of work and residence where a great number of similarly situated people, cut off from the wider community for a considerable time, together lead an enclosed, formally administered round of life...

s where they lost personal autonomy in favor of social control
Social control
Social control refers generally to societal and political mechanisms or processes that regulate individual and group behavior, leading to conformity and compliance to the rules of a given society, state, or social group. Many mechanisms of social control are cross-cultural, if only in the control...

. Government policies outside of schools have been implicated as well, as over the last forty years curfew
Curfew
A curfew is an order specifying a time after which certain regulations apply. Examples:# An order by a government for certain persons to return home daily before a certain time...

s, anti-loitering
Loitering
Loitering is the act of remaining in a particular public place for a protracted time. Under certain circumstances, it is illegal in various jurisdictions.-Prohibition and history:Loitering may be prohibited by local governments in several countries...

 and anti-cruising
Cruising (driving)
Cruising is a social activity that primarily consists of driving a car. Cruising can be an expression of the perceived freedom of possessing a driver's license. Cruising is distinguished from regular driving by the social and recreational nature of the activity, which characterized by an...

 laws, and other legislation apparently targeted at teenagers have taken hold across the country. Courts have increasingly ruled against youth rights
Youth rights
Youth rights refers to a set of philosophies intended to enhance civil rights for young people. They are a response to the oppression of young people, with advocates challenging ephebiphobia, adultism and ageism through youth participation, youth/adult partnerships, and promoting, ultimately,...

, as well. Before the 1940s "teenagers" were not listed in newspaper headlines, because as a group they did not exist. The impact of youth since World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 on western society has been immense, largely driven by marketing that proponents them as the "Other
Other
The Other or Constitutive Other is a key concept in continental philosophy; it opposes the Same. The Other refers, or attempts to refer, to that which is Other than the initial concept being considered...

." In turn, youth are caused to behave in ways that appear different from adults. This has led to the phenomenon of youth, and in turn has created a perpetuated fear of them.

Effects


The fear of youth affects the entire Western world
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

. Sociologist Ray Oldenburg
Ray Oldenburg
Ray Oldenburg is an urban sociologist from Florida who writes about the importance of informal public gathering places for a functioning civil society, democracy, and civic engagement...

 has attributed the generation gap
Generation gap
The generational gap is and was a term popularized in Western countries during the 1960s referring to differences between people of a younger generation and their elders, especially between children and parents....

 and the "increasing segregation of youth from adults in American society" to "adult estrangement and fear of youth." Fear of youth and their rejection is often disguised in a permissive attitude toward them.

At least one major economist has proposed that the fear of youth can have grave effects on the economic health of nations. A growing number of researchers report that the fear of youth affects the health of democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

, reporting that the consequential vilification of youth has in the past, and continues to presently undermine public, social, political, religious, and cultural participation among current and future generations.

As it affects young people themselves, ephebiphobia has been recognized as a barrier towards successful academic achievement, a barrier to successful social intervention programs, and as an indicator of the ineptitude of many adults to be successful parents.

Social discrimination


"Today citizens as a whole as well as people who work with children live in fear of youth in our homes and schools and on our streets." While "society loves their attractive bodies, youth
Youth
Youth is the time of life between childhood and adulthood . Definitions of the specific age range that constitutes youth vary. An individual's actual maturity may not correspond to their chronological age, as immature individuals could exist at all ages.-Usage:Around the world, the terms "youth",...

fulness and commercial firepower," we also, "vilify adolescents as a noncontributing drain on the economy and our democracy." In the mainstream media, young people are most often portrayed as self-absorbed and apathetic
Apathy
Apathy is a state of indifference, or the suppression of emotions such as concern, excitement, motivation and passion. An apathetic individual has an absence of interest in or concern about emotional, social, spiritual, philosophical or physical life.They may lack a sense of purpose or meaning in...

, uninterested in the common good or in advancing social goals.

Many social programs and social critics view the fear of youth as a condemning force against youth throughout society, particularly when coupled with racism
Racism
Racism is the belief that inherent different traits in human racial groups justify discrimination. In the modern English language, the term "racism" is used predominantly as a pejorative epithet. It is applied especially to the practice or advocacy of racial discrimination of a pernicious nature...

. Poet Gwendolyn Brooks
Gwendolyn Brooks
Gwendolyn Elizabeth Brooks was an American poet. She was appointed Poet Laureate of Illinois in 1968 and Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress in 1985.-Biography:...

 was applauded for her consciousness-raising work around the fear of youth, particularly young African-Americans. Popular contemporary beliefs about adolescents are different from historical narratives; in the past youth were portrayed as "the future" and the "leaders of tomorrow"; today they are seen as "a source of worry, not potential," contributing to a fear of adolescents, especially racial and ethnic minorities. In turn this racist
Racism
Racism is the belief that inherent different traits in human racial groups justify discrimination. In the modern English language, the term "racism" is used predominantly as a pejorative epithet. It is applied especially to the practice or advocacy of racial discrimination of a pernicious nature...

 and adultist
Adultism
Adultism has been defined as "the power adults have over children". More narrowly, 'adultism is prejudice and accompanying systematic discrimination against young people'...

 perspective informs urban law enforcement, public schools, and social services. Sociologists have suggested that much of the current spread of the fear of youth is due to "adult anxiety over the shifting racial mix in the general population." The effects of sexism
Sexism
Sexism, also known as gender discrimination or sex discrimination, is the application of the belief or attitude that there are characteristics implicit to one's gender that indirectly affect one's abilities in unrelated areas...

 are similarly reported to be amplified by ephebiphobia. However, New York University
New York University
New York University is a private, nonsectarian research university based in New York City. NYU's main campus is situated in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan...

 professor Pedro Noguera has suggested that the fear of youth extends beyond color boundaries, as "skateboard
Skateboard
A skateboard is typically a specially designed plywood board combined with a polyurethane coating used for making smoother slides and stronger durability, used primarily for the activity of skateboarding. The first skateboards to reach public notice came out of the surfing craze of the early 1960s,...

ers, punks
Punk subculture
The punk subculture includes a diverse array of ideologies, and forms of expression, including fashion, visual art, dance, literature, and film, which grew out of punk rock.-History:...

, even straight-laced suburb
Suburb
The word suburb mostly refers to a residential area, either existing as part of a city or as a separate residential community within commuting distance of a city . Some suburbs have a degree of administrative autonomy, and most have lower population density than inner city neighborhoods...

an teenagers can evoke anxiety among adults by congregating in large numbers in places deemed off-limits to youth."

The ability of youth to participate
Youth participation
Youth participation is the active engagement of young people throughout their communities. It is often used as a short-hand for youth participation in any many forms, including decision-making, sports, schools and any activity where young people are not historically engaged.-Coinage:Youth...

 throughout society is seen as compromised because of the fear of youth, and is often disguised as a paternalism
Paternalism
Paternalism refers to attitudes or states of affairs that exemplify a traditional relationship between father and child. Two conditions of paternalism are usually identified: interference with liberty and a beneficent intention towards those whose liberty is interfered with...

 or protectionism among adults. Additionally, scholar Henry Jenkins
Henry Jenkins
Henry Jenkins III is an American media scholar and currently a Provost Professor of Communication, Journalism, and Cinematic Arts, a joint professorship at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and the USC School of Cinematic Arts...

, "links criticism of new media with fear of adolescents, who are the most eager adopters. Teen culture
Youth subculture
A youth subculture is a youth-based subculture with distinct styles, behaviors, and interests. Youth subcultures offer participants an identity outside of that ascribed by social institutions such as family, work, home and school...

 seems meaningless and dangerous without an appreciation of its context."

Commercial gain


Academics specifically acknowledge the force of ephebiphobia in the commercial sector
Commerce
While business refers to the value-creating activities of an organization for profit, commerce means the whole system of an economy that constitutes an environment for business. The system includes legal, economic, political, social, cultural, and technological systems that are in operation in any...

, where this fear of youth has been extensively exploited for financial gain. This is elaborated on by researchers and social critics who claim that popular media, including cinema
Film
A film, also called a movie or motion picture, is a series of still or moving images. It is produced by recording photographic images with cameras, or by creating images using animation techniques or visual effects...

 and television
Television
Television is a telecommunication medium for transmitting and receiving moving images that can be monochrome or colored, with accompanying sound...

, specifically exacerbated society's fear of youth for financial gain, as one study reports, "Extreme fear of youth is an established media panic
Media panic
Media panic is a term often used to describe criticism against a new medium or media technology. Such debates have in recent years focused on computer media such as the Internet and the World Wide Web, computer games and social media - but media panic is an old phenomenon with a long history...

."

Pulp novels in the 1950s were mass produced to specifically cash in on the growing fear of youth that was spreading throughout society. Ironically, it has also been said that popular media's effects on young people are not as powerful as the fear of youth, which drives the fear of technology and in turn perpetuates the fear of youth.

Governmental policy


Decision-making by government
Government
Government refers to the legislators, administrators, and arbitrators in the administrative bureaucracy who control a state at a given time, and to the system of government by which they are organized...

 agencies, including public schools, policing
Police
The police is a personification of the state designated to put in practice the enforced law, protect property and reduce civil disorder in civilian matters. Their powers include the legitimized use of force...

 and court
Court
A court is a form of tribunal, often a governmental institution, with the authority to adjudicate legal disputes between parties and carry out the administration of justice in civil, criminal, and administrative matters in accordance with the rule of law...

s, have been found to be driven by the fear of youth. The fear of adolescents has been said to cause a disjunction between what is said about the value of young people and what is done to them in education and social services, and causes them to be seen, "primarily as threats - to persons, to institutions, to status quo
Status quo
Statu quo, a commonly used form of the original Latin "statu quo" – literally "the state in which" – is a Latin term meaning the current or existing state of affairs. To maintain the status quo is to keep the things the way they presently are...

." A number of observers have indicated the deliberate perpetuation of mass social ephebiphobia in order to elicit particular public and social responses. American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 sociologist Mike Males has identified trends among politicians and policy-makers of stoking the fear of youth among society in order to make headway in political campaign
Political campaign
A political campaign is an organized effort which seeks to influence the decision making process within a specific group. In democracies, political campaigns often refer to electoral campaigns, wherein representatives are chosen or referendums are decided...

s and build popular support for otherwise "generate media sensation and public fear." Similarly, the fear of youth has been identified as the driving factor behind many governmental programs designed to combat so-called "youth violence," in which the actions of few youth are attributed to the population of youth in general. In a specific instance, "In Dallas, fear of youth led to accelerated surveillance and policing, particularly in its poorest area, Gaston." The fear of adolescents is also said to have caused many governments to lower their age of criminal responsibility and escalate the detention of young people from childhood through adult
Adult
An adult is a human being or living organism that is of relatively mature age, typically associated with sexual maturity and the attainment of reproductive age....

hood.

Education


Examining the Black Power
Black Power
Black Power is a political slogan and a name for various associated ideologies. It is used in the movement among people of Black African descent throughout the world, though primarily by African Americans in the United States...

 movement of the 1970s, one researcher wrote, "The common adult dislike and fear of youth is compounded by the teacher's fear — fear of losing control in the classroom, fear of losing one's authority." A specific increase in the fear of youth in schools following the Columbine High School massacre
Columbine High School massacre
The Columbine High School massacre occurred on Tuesday, April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School in Columbine, an unincorporated area of Jefferson County, Colorado, United States, near Denver and Littleton. Two senior students, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, embarked on a massacre, killing 12...

 of 1999 is seen as a particular cause in evidence suggesting an overall decrease in student engagement
Student engagement
Student engagement occurs when "students make a psychological investment in learning. They try hard to learn what school offers. They take pride not simply in earning the formal indicators of success , but in understanding the material and incorporating or internalizing it in their lives." It is...

 throughout high school
High school
High school is a term used in parts of the English speaking world to describe institutions which provide all or part of secondary education. The term is often incorporated into the name of such institutions....

s today. Fear of youth has led to the development of zero tolerance
Zero tolerance
Zero tolerance imposes automatic punishment for infractions of a stated rule, with the intention of eliminating undesirable conduct. Zero-tolerance policies forbid persons in positions of authority from exercising discretion or changing punishments to fit the circumstances subjectively; they are...

 policies in many schools, which in turn is attributed as the cause of the increase in arrests for juvenile crime
Juvenile delinquency
Juvenile delinquency is participation in illegal behavior by minors who fall under a statutory age limit. Most legal systems prescribe specific procedures for dealing with juveniles, such as juvenile detention centers. There are a multitude of different theories on the causes of crime, most if not...

 on school campuses, which has promoted the fear of youth and led school administrators to call police
Police
The police is a personification of the state designated to put in practice the enforced law, protect property and reduce civil disorder in civilian matters. Their powers include the legitimized use of force...

 for infractions once dealt with internally.

Combating ephebiphobia


The American Library Association
American Library Association
The American Library Association is a non-profit organization based in the United States that promotes libraries and library education internationally. It is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 62,000 members....

 has developed a resource collection for librarians
Library
In a traditional sense, a library is a large collection of books, and can refer to the place in which the collection is housed. Today, the term can refer to any collection, including digital sources, resources, and services...

 specifically to combat the ephebiphobia by promoting customer service
Customer service
Customer service is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase.According to Turban et al. , “Customer service is a series of activities designed to enhance the level of customer satisfaction – that is, the feeling that a product or service has met the customer...

 skills specific to youth. However, sociologist Mike Males has suggested that ephebiphobia does not analyze the problem deep enough, as the fear of adult stereotype
Stereotype
A stereotype is a popular belief about specific social groups or types of individuals. The concepts of "stereotype" and "prejudice" are often confused with many other different meanings...

 of adolescence
Adolescence
Adolescence is a transitional stage of physical and mental human development generally occurring between puberty and legal adulthood , but largely characterized as beginning and ending with the teenage stage...

, or kourophobia, is the core challenge facing young people today.

See also

  • Fear of children
    Fear of children
    Fear of children, fear of infants or fear of childhood is alternatively called pedophobia, paedophobia or pediaphobia. Other age-focused fears are ephebiphobia and gerontophobia...

  • List of phobias
  • Adultism
    Adultism
    Adultism has been defined as "the power adults have over children". More narrowly, 'adultism is prejudice and accompanying systematic discrimination against young people'...

  • Ageism
    Ageism
    Ageism, also called age discrimination is stereotyping of and discrimination against individuals or groups because of their age. It is a set of beliefs, attitudes, norms, and values used to justify age based prejudice, discrimination, and subordination...

  • Adultcentrism
    Adultcentrism
    Adultcentrism is the exaggerated egocentrism of adults. It is used to describe the conditions facing children and youth in schools, homes, and community settings; however, adultcentrism is not always based on a notion of being good or bad, in contrast to adultism...

  • Paternalism
    Paternalism
    Paternalism refers to attitudes or states of affairs that exemplify a traditional relationship between father and child. Two conditions of paternalism are usually identified: interference with liberty and a beneficent intention towards those whose liberty is interfered with...

  • Youth rights
    Youth rights
    Youth rights refers to a set of philosophies intended to enhance civil rights for young people. They are a response to the oppression of young people, with advocates challenging ephebiphobia, adultism and ageism through youth participation, youth/adult partnerships, and promoting, ultimately,...

  • National Youth Rights Association
    National Youth Rights Association
    The National Youth Rights Association is the largest youth-led civil rights organization in the United States promoting youth rights, with approximately ten thousand members...

  • Americans for a Society Free from Age Restrictions
    Americans for a Society Free from Age Restrictions
    Americans for a Society Free from Age Restrictions, also known as ASFAR Youth Liberation, is an organization dedicated to increasing the rights of youth under American law...

  • Moral panic
    Moral panic
    A moral panic is the intensity of feeling expressed in a population about an issue that appears to threaten the social order. According to Stanley Cohen, author of Folk Devils and Moral Panics and credited creator of the term, a moral panic occurs when "[a] condition, episode, person or group of...

  • Mass hysteria
  • Herding instinct
  • Social control
    Social control
    Social control refers generally to societal and political mechanisms or processes that regulate individual and group behavior, leading to conformity and compliance to the rules of a given society, state, or social group. Many mechanisms of social control are cross-cultural, if only in the control...

  • Youth culture
  • Youth voice
    Youth voice
    Youth voice refers to the distinct ideas, opinions, attitudes, knowledge, and actions of young people as a collective body. The term youth voice often groups together a diversity of perspectives and experiences, regardless of backgrounds, identities, and cultural differences...

  • List of youth subcultures
  • Generation gap
    Generation gap
    The generational gap is and was a term popularized in Western countries during the 1960s referring to differences between people of a younger generation and their elders, especially between children and parents....

  • In loco parentis
    In loco parentis
    The term in loco parentis, Latin for "in the place of a parent"" refers to the legal responsibility of a person or organization to take on some of the functions and responsibilities of a parent...

  • Holt, J. (1964) How Children Fail
    How Children Fail
    How Children Fail is a non-fiction book by John Holt, published in 1964 and republished in 1982 in a revised edition. It has sold over a million copies...

    . New York: Delta.
  • Llewellyn, G. (n.d.) The Teenage Liberation Handbook: how to quit school and get a real life and education.
    The Teenage Liberation Handbook
    The Teenage Liberation Handbook: How to Quit School and Get a Real Life and Education, originally published in 1991 by Grace Llewellyn, is a book about unschooling. Inspired by John Holt's educational views among others, the book encourages teenagers to leave full-time school and let their...


External links