"Differences in profiles of identity and purpose between civically engaged and not engaged youth"
Assuming that civic involvement contexts provide opportunities to explore facets of personal (i.e., understanding who one is), and social identity (i.e., one’s place and role in society), we hypothesized that profiles of identity would differ between youth engaged and not engaged in civic and political activities. We modeled identity configurations in a sample of 538 late Chilean adolescents and young adults, that differed in their engagement with civic and political organizations. Using latent class analysis, three distinctive classes of identity configurations were identified: a class characterized by high levels of coherence, commitment, and purpose; a class characterized by value coherence and commitment, but low purpose; and a class characterized by high interest in current civic activities, but low value coherence and sense of purpose. Membership in the highly coherent and purposeful class was predicted by critical consciousness. Overall, results highlight that identity dimensions coalesce in consistent patterns, and that highly coherent, committed, and purposeful youth are more likely to be engaged in civic and political activities and present higher levels of critical thinking about society.
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