Resilience and Vulnerability: Adaptation in the Context of Childhood Adversities

By Suniya S. Luthar | Go to book overview

Resilience and Vulnerability
Adaptation in the Context of Childhood Adversities

Childhood resilience is the phenomenon of positive adaptation despite significant life adversities. While interest in resilience has burgeoned in recent years, there remains considerable uncertainty about what exactly research has taught us about this phenomenon. Integrated in this book are contributions from leading scientists who have each studied children's adjustment across risks common in contemporary society. Chapters in the first half of the book focus on risks emanating from the family; chapters in the second half focus on risks stemming from the wider community. All contributors have explicitly addressed a common set of core themes, including the criteria they used to judge resilience within particular risk settings, the major factors that predict resilience in these settings, the limits to resilience (vulnerabilities coexisting with manifest success), and directions for interventions. In the concluding chapter, the editor integrates evidence presented throughout all preceding chapters to distill (a) substantive considerations for future research and (b) salient directions for interventions and social policies based on accumulated research knowledge.

Suniya S. Luthar is Professor of Psychology and Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She is the author of Children in Poverty: Risk and Protective Forces in Adjustment (1999) and the coeditor of Developmental Psychopathology: Perspectives on Adjustment, Risk, and Disorder (1997). Dr. Luthar is Associate Editor of the journal Development and Psychopathology and has been a member of the editorial boards ofboth Child Development and Developmental Psychology. Professional awards include a Dissertation Award from APA's Division 37 (Child, Youth, & Family Services; 1990), a K-21 Research Scientist Development Award from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (1993–1998), an American Mensa Education and Research Foundation Award for Excellence in Research on Intelligence (1995), and a Boyd McCandless Young Scientist Award from APA's Division 7 (Developmental Psychology, 1998).

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