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Social Capital and Successful Development among At-Risk Youth

Frank F. Furstenberg, Jr. and Mary Elizabeth Hughes
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 57, No. 3 (Aug., 1995), pp. 580-592
DOI: 10.2307/353914
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/353914
Page Count: 13
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Social Capital and Successful Development among At-Risk Youth
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Abstract

This article applies Coleman's concept of social capital to understand differences in development among youth at risk of lifelong disadvantage. Utilizing data from a longitudinal study of 252 children of teenage mothers, we explore the relationships between measures of social capital and several indicators of young adult success. After considering bivariate relationships between the youth outcomes and the measures of social capital, we introduce controls for family human capital and the youth's status 3 years earlier. Our results suggest that social capital, broadly construed, plays a role in helping youth negotiate their way out of disadvantage. However, social capital appears to subsume a number of discrete dimensions that are differently linked to particular outcomes. A promising approach for future research is to examine how different types of social capital might be related to various arenas of success in early adulthood.

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