Hopes and Fears for the Future Among Chinese Adolescents

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Abstract

This study examined the contents of adolescents' hopes and fears for the future in a sample of 1,975 urban and rural 8th, 10th, and 12th graders in China. Chinese adolescents' hopes and fears were most often related to future education, occupation, parental well-being, marriage and family, academics, leisure activities, wealth, interpersonal relationships, collective issues, and self-related issues. Urban adolescents compared to rural ones reported more hopes for education and leisure activities and held fewer hopes and fears for parental well-being and interpersonal relationships. Males reported more hopes and fears for marriage, whereas females reported more hopes and fears for parental well-being. These results suggest the important role of the social and cultural context in adolescents' future thinking.

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