Three Dimensions of Adulthood: Freedom, Responsibility, and Care

Three Dimensions of Adulthood:
Freedom, Responsibility, and Care

Andreeva A.S.

PhD Student, HSE University – St. Petersburg, Research Assistant, Centre for Youth Studies HSE University, St. Petersburg, Russia

ID of the Article: 9693

This research paper uses the results of the Basic Research Program at the National Research University Higher School of Economics (HSE University) in 2020–2022. We express our deep appreciation and gratitude to our colleagues from the Centre for Youth Studies and our informants who took part in this research.

For citation:

Andreeva A.S. Three Dimensions of Adulthood: Freedom, Responsibility, and Care. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2023. No 7. P. 105-116


This paper focuses on the specifics of Russian youth’ transition to adulthood. Transition to adulthood is a theoretical construct at the heart of the relevant discussion, however, its specifics in the Russian context remain underresearched. Through critically reflecting on neoliberal and gender perspectives of contextualizing the transition to adulthood, we pay attention to both individual and collective aspects of it. Based on 30 in-depth semi-structured interviews with residents of St. Petersburg aged 18–43, we demonstrate which subjective markers of adulthood are the key to constructing an image of an adult. The analysis was done on the results of the project “Transition to adulthood among Russian youth in the 21st century: generational analysis” carried out within the HSE Program of Fundamental Research in 2020–2022. Our empirically developed categories of freedom, responsibility, and care as well as their configurations in traditional and alternative images of adulthood pose an interest for understanding the specifics of Russian youth’ emotionally saturated transition to adulthood.

youth; transition to adulthood; markers of adulthood; precarity


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