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Biological Predispositions and Social Control in Adolescent Sexual Behavior

J. Richard Udry
American Sociological Review
Vol. 53, No. 5 (Oct., 1988), pp. 709-722
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2095817
Page Count: 14
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Biological Predispositions and Social Control in Adolescent Sexual Behavior
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Abstract

This paper develops biosocial models of adolescent sexuality that combine traditional sociological models with models derived from a biological theory of hormone effects. Data are presented from a representative sample of 102 males and 99 females, drawn from grades 8, 9, and 10 in public schools in a southern U.S. city, and ranging in age from 13 to 16 years old. Although the sociological models alone look quite satisfactory, the combined models are stronger and give a different picture of the determinants of adolescent sexuality. The combined models show not only additive contributions of sociological and biological variables, but interactions between sociological and hormonal variables. Some sociological relationships are shown to be spurious. In other cases, sociological predictors are shown to be endogenous to biological predictors.

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