"No one who cares deeply about people in their twenties should be without this book. In Sharon Parks's lyrical company we learn so much more about their biggest possibilities-and our own." Robert Kegan, author, In Over Our Heads and How the Way We Talk Changes The Way We Work; Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education
"Parks's clear voice in Big Questions, Worthy Dreams is simultaneously that of a scholar, clinician, ethicist, and priestthat of a rare and capable generalist who can nurture both teachers and students . . . . [and] reveal the architecture of the process by which we merge the questions of ultimate reality with the immediate needs and duties of our generation. Stunningly transparent. Essential insight." Janet Cooper Nelson, Chaplain of the University, Brown University
I have spent the last thirty years, over half my life, devoted to the education and development of young adults. This book is a must-read for anyone who is focused on this age group. I wish I had read this at the beginning of my career as an educator." James I. Cash Jr., professor and senior associate dean, Harvard Business School
"In this book we are reminded that Parks is a keen observer, a probing listener, a rich and subtle theorist, and a resourceful teacher. She writes with a spirit that calls forth the best capacities in young adults and in all those who care about their becoming." James W. Fowler, author, Stages of Faith
"Sharon Daloz Parks has done it again. With thoughtful observation and wisdom born from experience, she provides us with remarkable insight into the lives of young adults. Her skillful weaving together of both theory and practice raises the conversation on the mission and higher education to new levels. Ultimately, this book is a challenge, a challenge to engage more, listen more, risk more in other words to be more fully human." Steve Moore, vice president of Student Life, Baylor University
As society becomes more complex and socially diverse, the stages of early adulthood lengthen and grow more complicated as well. Parks, an associate director of the Whidbey Institute, addresses this dilemma in this successor to The Critical Years: Young Adults and the Search for Meaning, Faith, and Commitment (1986). Drawing upon the developmental theories of Swiss cognitive psychologist Jean Piaget and others, she applies and broadens their insights to the spiritual journey young people face. Critical features include a movement from authority-based forms of meaning to self-reliance. She also presents a theory of imagination and its power to light the passions of a new generation. "Mentoring communities" are viewed as a powerful new form of social support for young adults. These relationships may be forged in higher education, job settings, or other institutions where young adults are encouraged to pursue worthy dreams rather than narrow self-interest. Thoughtful, stimulating, and well-referenced, this book is recommended for counselors and spiritual advisers and the academic collections that serve them.--Antoinette Brinkman, formerly with Southwest Indiana Mental Health Ctr. Lib., Evansville Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.