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Families Across Time. A Life Course Perspective (Readings)

Опубликовано на портале: 28-11-2006
Roxbury Publishing Co, 2000, 241 с.
Тематический раздел:
Using a consistent theoretical orientation, this book explores the "life course" approach to family life - including parent-child, spousal, and sibling relationships. It reflects the diversity represented in contemporary families as they grapple with changes and transitions in family relationships during the life cycle. "Families Across Time" is unique in its integration of research, theory, and application in a variety of topic areas related to family life. The contributors to this volume, which include prominent and established scholars as well as young professionals, address a diversity of family forms as well as all stages of family life - in contrast to the traditional emphasis on early stages. The essays in this book represent a breadth of content and scholarship; at the same time they are student-friendly and highly readable. Extensive case scenarios and other examples augment the content of each essay, serving as examples to enhance the reader's ability to understand the challenges families face over the life course. The book's approach emphasizes transitions and tasks in lieu of focusing on the characteristics of stages associated with family development. Different aspects of family life are examined up-close and across the life span for each topic covered. Price, McKenry, and Murphy offer introductions to each section, which frame each set of essays and provide context for the reader. Discussion questions are included at the end of each chapter.


1. Families Across Time: A Life Course Perspective
Sharon J. Price, Patrick C. McKenry, and Megan J. Murphy
The editors provide an in-depth historical and conceptual overview of the development of the life course of families and a rationale for adopting this approach.


2. Divorced Families Over the Life Course
Kimberly J. M. Downs, Marilyn Coleman, and Larry Ganong
The authors argue that, unlike other normative events related to family life, there are few social norms for guiding appropriate divorce time and/or behaviors over the life course.

3. Remarried Families Over the Life Course
Margaret Crosbie-Burnett and Katrina McClintic
In this piece, Crosbie-Burnett and McClintic address the transitions stepfamilies experience in their various stages of development and the natural tensions between the individual and the family's development.

4. Gay/Lesbian Families Over the Life Course
Katherine Allen and Karen L. Wilcox
Allen and Wilcox discuss the multiple life-course context of same-sex partnerships and romantic relationships, lesbian mothers and gay fathers, and children of lesbian and gay parents.

5. African-American Families: Trends and Issues Over the Life Course
Karen Weddle-West
Numerous challenges confront African-American families over the life course. Here, Weddle-West shows that in spite of these hurdles, many families have survived by utilizing their culturally distinct strengths and resources.

6. Cohabitation and Never Married Families Across Time
Geoffrey K. Leigh
Leigh argues for the need of a model that focuses on changes in relationship dynamics and interaction patterns for a variety of nonmarital intimate relationships over the life course.


7. Marital Relationships: A Life Course Perspective
Jacki A. Fitzpatrick and Karen S. Wampler
These authors address ways in which identity, networking, and safety tasks develop over the life course.

8. A Life Course Approach to Family Violence
Richard Gelles
Gelles discusses the fact that age is related to the likelihood of intimate or family violence. He posits that using a life-course approach may aid in the development of interventions, prevention, and policies related to family violence.

9. Families in the Context of Communities Across Time
Gary L. Bowen, Jack M. Richman, and Natasha K. Bowen
The authors emphasize interaction between communities and families over the life course, arguing that new models of family and community development are needed which recognize diversity and variation in the timing of transitions.

10. Health and Illness in Families Through the Life Cycle
Thomas L. Campbell
Taking a biopsychosocial approach, Campbell addresses the impact of health problems at all stages of life as well as the need for health-care professionals to recognize variations over time.

11. Caregiving Over the Life Course
Christine A. Price and Hilary A. Rose
Using an attachment model, Price and Rose look at how individuals in traditional and non-traditional families care for and care about their loved ones. The authors then propose an exchange of assistance between family members and generations.

12. Family Economic Issues Across Time
Kathyrn D. Rettig and Ronit D. Leichtenbritt
The authors discuss the impact of decisions made at various points during the life course on the economic status of family members. They call for the development of educational programs to help young people understand the consequences of such decisions.

13. Religion and Families Over the Life Course
J. Elizabeth Miller Norrell
This article explores the interface of religion and family throughout the life course - how these developments help families and individuals cope with changes in the family life cycle by providing structure, guidance, a sense of community, an extended family, and a sense of external authority and internal empowerment.

14. Parent-Child Relationships Across the Life Course: Autonomy Within the Context of Connectedness
Gary W. Peterson, Debra Madden-Derdich, and Stacie A. Leonard
The authors present literature relevant to the transitions that occur in parent-child relationships over the life course, with an emphasis on the need to continually define and redefine the shifting balance between autonomy and connectedness.

15. Family Life Education Over the Life Course
Margaret Arcus
Arcus argues that greater attention should be devoted to the family-life education needs of later-life individuals, traditional families, and nontraditional families.

16. Family Systems in Flux: Critical Implications for Life Course Transitions
Suzanne Bartle-Haring, Roy A. Bean, Tina Bedell, and Benjamin J. Perry
The authors argue that, by understanding the culture, values, belief systems, and norms that families utilize to cope with transitions throughout the life course, mental health professionals will be better equipped to help families.

17. Policy Issues and Families Over the Life Course
Julie K. Kohler and Shirley L. Zimmerman
This essay stresses the interconnections between families and political systems. Understanding these complexities and the way in which policies affect families, the authors suggest, would help avert possible adverse consequences for families.