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Diane Publishing Books
Rumspringa: To Be or Not to Be Amish
Tom Shachtman (au)
A fascinating look at a little-known Amish coming-of-age ritual, the “Rumspringa” -- the period of “running around” that begins for Amish youth at age 16. The trappings of the Amish way of life -- the “plain” clothes and electricity-free farms -- conceal a mystery: how the Amish manage to retain their young people and perpetuate themselves. The key is the “Rumspringa,” when Amish youth are allowed to live outside the bounds of their faith, experimenting with alcohol, premarital sex, telephones, drugs, wild parties, and advanced education. By allowing such broad freedoms, their parents hope they will learn enough to help them make the most important decision of their lives -- whether to be baptized in the Amish church or to remain out in the world. Illus.
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