Adolescence is a recent conception in the history of man, a method of signifying, via puberty, the passage from childhood to adulthood which has always existed. In the past, this passage was celebrated and defined through the practice of rituals. Today the transition is no longer marked within such a strict timescale. Even more serious is the tendency for adults to refuse young people entry into their grown up world, either as a result of their own fear of aging, or of their desire to protect the young person from all possible risk. Patrice Huerre is a hospital psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and director of the Georges Heuyer University Medical Clinic in Paris. Martine Pagan-Reymond is a certified professor in Modern Literature. Jean-Michel Reymond, formerly Chief of Staff of Child and Adolescent Psycology is now Director of the Medical-Pedagogic Center of Saint-Lô.
In the last 15 years, the social disease of suburban youth has been on the front pages of newspapers, feeding fear and encouraging a certain social and political discourse centered around the notions of crisis, disorder and desocialization. Coming from a direct experience, this book opposes the "problematic of the social vacuum" with a resolutely ethnological approach to relations between the adolescents of large urban settings. David Lepoutre is a professor of History and Geography in the second degree and gives courses in Ethnology at the Universities of Paris XIII and Lille II.
Some human beings refuse to take the path that leads from being male to becoming a man or from being female and becoming a woman and want to belong to the sex for which their bodies were not designed -and this at any price. In our culture, these transsexuals want to both occupy the other place in the network of symbolic exchanges and have a mark of this change in their bodies. Their sadness is irremediable, for although they can change their social sex, they cannot change their bodily sex. "It's better " states one transsexual, "to change what's in the mind". Will we succeed in doing so ? A university professor, Colette Chiland taught psychology and psychopathology of children and adolescents, then clinical psychology at the Sorbonne University in Paris.