Pub. date: 2010 | Online Pub. Date: November 23, 2010 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412959193 | Print ISBN: 9781412959186 | Online ISBN: 9781412959193| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Thomas, W. I.: The Unadjusted Girl
Simon I. Singer
Is the unadjusted girl really that unadjusted, deviant, delinquent, or criminal? For W. I. Thomas the answer to this question depends on the situation, and it is not just one situation that should be taken into account. After all, there are the situations of the family, school, and the larger society. In each of these situations, there is the possibility that individuals will think and act differently. Rather than to think in one singularly directed mind, Thomas wrote that those living in the early-20th-century industrialized American city confronted a multitude of situational definitions. In his book The Unadjusted Girl , he was able to illustrate the conflict between old and new world definitions of a situation. He was also able to show that there were certain universal desires that conflicted with societal definitions of the situation leading to the “demoralization” of girls. Thomas concluded that the unadjusted girl's desires and ...