Year of Graduation
The teenage friendship phenomenon in the context of Russian modern society in the case of Moscow schoolchildren of 13-15 years
Faculty of Sociology
The current research is focused on the teenage friendship phenomenon in the modern society in the case of the Moscow schoolchildren of 13-15 years. The major goal of this study is the construction of the model of friendly relationships among teenagers.To achieve the goal we have analysed sociological literature on friendship and teenagers and also considered the studies which examined the teenage friendship. The following research assumptions were made on the basis of the performed analysis: a) teenagers are an emotionally unstable group prone to addictions of different kind, undergoing the processes of self-searching and identity formation and experiencing an identity crisis; b) for teenagers friendship appears to be a mode of self-identification facilitating the search process; c) teenagers are maximalists striving for the ideal friendship; d) they are not able to find their ideal in the modern society. Moreover, the term friendship (friendship is the type of social relationships based on the conditions of voluntariness, reciprocity, openness, trust and love, which has a value in itself) and the sociopsychological features of the teenagers (identity formation, role experimentation, emotional intensity and an irresistible desire to be accepted by the society) were defined and used for developing a guide for the empirical part of the current research.The guide contained four parts: a brief story about oneself; a story about the friends; a story about the best friend and a story about an ideal friend. Each of the parts had several questions that aimed to stimulate the respondent to a narrative talk.The total of 9 interviews, approximately 40 minutes each, has been conducted with the students of a prestigious Moscow supplementary education centre. Obtaining British education in Moscow is the major target of the centre. Together with the high cost of education this makes the sample rather specific and the current research is considered as a case-study.The following conclusions were made on the basis of the performed analysis of the interviews. Firstly, the teenagers are prone to being very flat. They consider their acquaintances as either friends or enemies. Secondly, the teenagers consider their friendly relationships to be ideal, not paying attention to the quarrels and conflicts which appear occasionally. The same concerns teenagers’ best friends as teenagers totally ignore their shortcomings. Thirdly, both the features teenagers like in their friends and the features they dislike help teenagers in their identity formation. And fourthly, the basis of teenage friendship is a guarantee for an in individual to be interesting to someone else and to be accepted.