Volume 24, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1387-6740
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9935
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In the present article, I explore how urban youth use narrating for self-presentation as they relate to diverse contexts and audiences. Diverse narrative genres employed in this study were used as a socio-cognitive tool for looking into enactments of relational complexity — a skill of adjusting one’s communications to audiences and contexts. Thirteen adolescents were asked to narrate about the most important aspects of their lives, using two different genres and addressing two different audiences. I explored youth’s systematically varied use of psychological state expressions, as they navigated through different genres and audiences. As adolescents narrate either about the negative experiences or for the imagined peer audience, their narrating involves more cognitive than affective expressions. This indicates that systematic changes take place in narrating as a socio-cognitive process when there is a need for more intense work around issues, either to figure out what is happening, or to try to present oneself in the best light to salient others.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): adolescence; affect; cognition; evaluative devices; narrative genre; relational complexity
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