This is 18 Around the World — Through Girls’ Eyes

What does life look like for girls turning 18 in 2018? We gave young women photographers around the world an assignment: Show us 18 in your community. This is 18 — through girls’ eyes.

Comments: 48

  1. Hi-I am a high school science teacher in Troy, NY. I absolutely loved this piece and will share with the cosmetology class teachers at our career tech school. This was incredibly beautiful and wonderful.; and well done! Thank you-I forgot for a minute how tough the politics of our world are and saw great hope in the wonderful women in the future!

  2. beautiful! t

  3. Bittersweet - so many hopes, but also fears, just due to being a woman. Best of luck to all of them. I’d love to see a follow-up at 21!

  4. Stunning! A dose of purity, hope, and reality blended into a beautiful narrative. I loved the multimedia nature of the feature too! Humbled by how mature these young ladies sound beyond their years. Thank you for sharing this with the world.

  5. As a father of an 18 year old girl, I loved this article (and of course forwarded it to my daughter). Thanks for this. An example of terrific journalism.

  6. Are you going to do a similar article about boys or do we not care about them?

  7. Ah yes, the so disadvantaged boys that no one pays any attention to in the massive "son culture" of every nation. Women like you who genuflect to all the patriarchal tilts then complain constantly that daughters get anything in life are nothing short of ignorant misogynists. Let me guess, Brenda, you voted for Trump. One hopes you do at least teach your coddled mama's boys about consent, respect and birth control.

  8. I can assure you, anyone who appreciates this piece also cares about boys. From, a boy.

  9. Wow! I loved this! Finally a hopeful article about our youth! I have two sons, 19 and 23. I see the future in them, and the future is bright.

    Congrats of a great piece!

  10. This piece is fantastic. Kudos to NYT for terrific reportage. I've spent most of the past 35 years in NGO work, helping the poorest and most vulnerable around the globe. I was buoyed up reading about 18-yr-old girls around the world in 2018. Granted, none of them are the very poor or very rich and they are all somewhat urbane, but that’s part of what was so encouraging—more and more girls are NOT super poor, and they can think about things like school, music, slang, relationships. The sidebar features like photos of what they eat for breakfast etc. celebrate both the similarities and the differences between cultures and just between people.
    WELL DONE!!!

  11. Loved this piece. Thanks for this.

  12. Love the Baby Boomer scrapbook layout and Boomer colors to represent digital age Generation Z young women. After half-a-century of Boomer culture, it would have been nice to see a layout the Zetas themselves would have preferred.

  13. This is amazing and beautiful. Thank you.

  14. Fascinating! But the young woman with 20,000 selfies of herself? Yipes. I sure hope that's not representative of 18 year old women today. A bit much, no? LOL.

  15. What I get from this piece is what I had imagined all along:
    ...That in spite of the many stresses, and the ubiquitous challenges that confront young women everywhere, just being one and being true to one's self is a gift, that keeps giving every day...
    PS: I am a man. Nevertheless, I do what I can, to picture for myself what women everywhere are thinking and feeling. It's the least I can do.

  16. Beautiful piece!
    Will show to my daughters (pre teens still) tonight.
    Thank you!

  17. This is sexism. The focus on only women is gender discrimination. I am constantly amazed at the relentless tire pumping by the Times for girls and women. You'd think boys and men don't exist and are irrelevant. One has to imagine that everything the Times want to reinforce is simply feeling good aspirational talk and unlikely in real terms to ever exist. Its endless Stuart Smalley incantations instead of the practical application of focused methods, efforts, and goals.

  18. I'm sorry these flashed by so quickly that I couldn't enjoy them as I would like.

  19. I agree, the format is tough - a little too big for the screen.

  20. Thanks NYTimes for this. Great to see and hear the future in these young women.

  21. I loved it. Loved the details of their favorite songs/slang/food. Congrats!

  22. As a Marriage and Family therapist who has specialized in teen girls and their families for generations, I was so energized by this tender and gritty moment in a young woman's life. And then to hear from these women dotting the globe, it made the piece especially powerful. I hope it gets shared a zillion times. Thank you. Thank you.

  23. My heart breaks for the 18-year-old in Mississippi. She either was not supported as a younger teen and provided birth control with self esteem encouragement by her parents or bought into some guy's lame "happily ever after" song and dance. Now, she is held hostage for the next 18+ years of raising that kid by herself.

  24. This is rad. Keep stories like this going.

  25. So nice to have something like this amongst the normal doom & gloom of the daily news. Format was tough on computer but I kind of liked the old-school scrapbook/yearbook feel to it. I wish them all the best.

  26. I am not quite sure I understand the motivation behind this. Is it meant to be some sort of anthropological or sociatal time capsule? It's got sort of a voyeuristic, Vanity Fair feel about it, and I don't know what the take-away is meant to be; is it that 18 year old females around the world share differences and similarities? I have an 18 year old daughter, so perhaps this is why I find this entire spread to be nothing special. I showed it to her, and without prompting she commented, "that's great, they all seem nice, but what's the point?"

  27. This is absolutely phenomenal. Great job to the NY Times team and all the women subjects and photojournalists. Do you plan to do a similar version documenting young men around the world? I think that would be really interesting as well -- especially because, as inferred, I love this piece.

  28. Thank you so much for doing this. During my 25 years as a journalist, one of my favorite things was to take a close look at what seemed like everyday occurrences, everyday places. You show us ourselves. You show us our differences. I love how we can recognize ourselves around the world. Wonderful project.

  29. I notice the absence of young Balkan(Albanian,Bulgarian,Serbian,Greek,Croat,Romanian,etc and Most Eastern European)women, they don't count as "Europeans", I would like for the author to explains to us who made the final decision.

  30. Only me, but 11 out of 21 survey shots of the girls featured cellphones! How will the cellphone/electronic umbilical cord shape their futures? There was a remarkable homogeneity in appearance and affect despite the girls apparently being 18 year old citizens of different parts of the world.
    I, too, would like to revisit these young woman in five years and see if any of them managed their hopes and dreams.....and their device addictions.

  31. This is wonderful. But there seem to be more girls than you profile. Am I just missing them somehow? Will you run them later?

  32. Beautiful piece, thoughtful journalism. Well done!!!

  33. So importnant to celebrate our differences... our family is half Dutch (Netherlands) and half Mayflower... a fact I am less willimg to share as the years go on. Our eldest (all 4 girls) is an Arabic studies major... and speaks French... I am so proud to have these multi-cultural children and am saddened by the turn the US is taking... :(

  34. I loved loved loved this! As diverse as the girls were, they were also alike in many ways. I will be sharing this with my 17 year old students and my colleagues who teach seniors.

  35. A wonderful article that I will happily share with my my students who are on the cusp of their high school graduations.

  36. "Madison outside her parents' home" photo is pathetic. The other pics show girls with at least some semblance of pride. hope for the future, and self esteem. Madison will have to deal with this image of her destitute self for the rest of her life. Not fair at all, NYTimes. You should be ashamed. Why pick on her? Seriously.

  37. My soon-to-be-18 year old daughter and I loved this! The hope in all of these girls is inspiring and wishing them success with their goals for 5 years and beyond.

  38. Great piece.

  39. Terrific piece, I think there would be great interest in similar pieces on 18 year old boys around the World, women/men at 40 and 65 too. A great theme and well executed (pictures were v good). JCG

  40. I was touched by the similarities of these young ladies. Each story unique to themselves and their circumstances. And yet, it is a celebration of being an 18 year old today.

    I teach High School in Northern Virginia; each one could have been a student in my classes.

    How beautiful is the mind that speaks!

    (as far as the format of the article using the zoom out feature worked perfectly)

  41. Thank you! I loved this, and have shared it with all the teenage girls & young women I know (amongst others). For me, part of its value is in showing, so accessibly and without proselytising, how far the global movements for economic and gender equity still have to go. And apart from that, it was just lovely on a human level, both in terms of the wonderful young women featured and re the developmental opportunity for the talented young photographers. Well done to all involved! Please, please do more!! There are so many rites of passage you could cover, for every gender. Thanks again.

  42. Wow!! Powerful!! Makes me optimistic for the future!

  43. great content and format. thank you for this.

  44. The hope of all mankind is 18 years old womankind.

  45. This was great. Thank you NY Times. On the cusp of adulthood but still really children.....doesn't matter where you live -

  46. Thank you for sharing, and thank you to all who shared such an intimate and diverse snapshot of their lives. I think this piece is fantastic, and shows the best of the human endeavor. One cannot read this and escape reflecting on our current political situation in the states, along with all the other perspectives of how policy and culture may affect a woman's life, specifically. These stories stand on their own, they are important, and as a man, I hope women keep not accepting a reality defined by men. I think it makes us all better and gives me hope that someday respecting others and taking care of our planet will be our greatest calling.

  47. Really beautiful! This was fascinating and uplifting.

  48. What a beautiful, moving piece. Thank you so much. Could you do this every year?