Identity Formation in Adulthood : A Longitudinal Study from Age 27 to 50
Fadjukoff, P., Pulkkinen, L., & Kokko, K. (2016). Identity Formation in Adulthood : A Longitudinal Study from Age 27 to 50. Identity: An International Journal of Theory and Research, 16 (1), 8-23. doi:10.1080/15283488.2015.1121820
© 2016 Päivi Fadjukoff, Lea Pulkkinen, and Katja Kokko. Published with license by Taylor & Francis. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License.
Longitudinal patterns of identity formation were analyzed in a representative cohort group of Finnish men and women born in 1959 across ages 27, 36, 42, and 50. The data were drawn from the Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Personality. Identity status (diffused, moratorium, foreclosed, achieved) from all four ages was available for 172 participants (54% females). Marcia’s Identity Status Interview used in this research included five domains: religious beliefs, political identity, occupational career, intimate relationships, and lifestyle. The findings indicated great variability in identity status across domains at each age level, and the identity trajectories fluctuated from age 27 to 50. The developmental trend from age 27 to 50 was moderately progressive (toward achievement) for the five domains and for overall identity, with the exception of a slightly regressive trend in male religious identity. Remaining stable in the same status category across the four measurements was rare and emerged only for diffusion in the ideological domains. Women generally outnumbered men in identity achievement at earlier ages, but the gender differences diminished in most domains at age 50, except in religious identity. In women overall diffusion decreased over time, but in men it remained at about 20% at ages 42 and 50. ...