[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
June 28, 1965


JAMA. 1965;192(13):1156. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080260044013

A current rock-and-roll ditty extols the delights to be found "downtown." Parents would very much like to know exactly what is going on downtown, but it is probable that teenagers are no more willing to enlighten fathers and mothers this year than their counterparts were in past decades. What characterizes the emotional pattern of today's adolescents? Are our youths frustrated, angry individuals? Is it possible to talk about the "average" teenager? And how does one ascertain "typically normal" behavior? Offer, Sabshin, and Marcus1 contend that it is important to study teenagers who are not patients, in order to understand fully the range of adolescent psychodynamics. These psychiatrists have recently reported the results of a three-year study of 84 boys, ages 14 to 16, from two suburban public high schools. The investigators conclude that studies on normal adolescent populations give valid results if a combination of traditional and new methods