Counted Out

Author: Brian Powell
Editor: Russell Sage Foundation
ISBN: 1610447204
Size: 18,10 MB
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When state voters passed the California Marriage Protection Act (Proposition 8) in 2008, it restricted the definition of marriage to a legal union between a man and a woman. The act’s passage further agitated an already roiling national debate about whether American notions of family could or should expand to include, for example, same-sex marriage, unmarried cohabitation, and gay adoption. But how do Americans really define family? The first study to explore this largely overlooked question, Counted Out examines currents in public opinion to assess their policy implications and predict how Americans’ definitions of family may change in the future. Counted Out broadens the scope of previous studies by moving beyond efforts to understand how Americans view their own families to examine the way Americans characterize the concept of family in general. The book reports on and analyzes the results of the authors’ Constructing the Family Surveys (2003 and 2006), which asked more than 1,500 people to explain their stances on a broad range of issues, including gay marriage and adoption, single parenthood, the influence of biological and social factors in child development, religious ideology, and the legal rights of unmarried partners. Not surprisingly, the authors find that the standard bearer for public conceptions of family continues to be a married, heterosexual couple with children. More than half of Americans also consider same-sex couples with children as family, and from 2003 to 2006 the percentages of those who believe so increased significantly—up 6 percent for lesbian couples and 5 percent for gay couples. The presence of children in any living arrangement meets with a notable degree of public approval. Less than 30 percent of Americans view heterosexual cohabitating couples without children as family, while similar couples with children count as family for nearly 80 percent. Counted Out shows that for most Americans, however, the boundaries around what they define as family are becoming more malleable with time. Counted Out demonstrates that American definitions of family are becoming more expansive. Who counts as family has far-reaching implications for policy, including health insurance coverage, end-of-life decisions, estate rights, and child custody. Public opinion matters. As lawmakers consider the future of family policy, they will want to consider the evolution in American opinion represented in this groundbreaking book. A Volume in the American Sociological Association’s Rose Series in Sociology

Frontiers In Sociology Of Education

Author: Maureen T. Hallinan
Editor: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 9789400715769
Size: 18,20 MB
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Scholarly analysis in the sociology of education has burgeoned in recent decades. Frontiers in Sociology of Education aims to provide a roadmap for sociologists and other social scientists as they set bold new directions for future research on schools. In Part 1 of this forward-looking volume, the authors present cutting-edge research to set new guidelines for the sociological analysis of schools. In Part 2, notable social scientists, historians, administrators and educators provide a wide-ranging array of perspectives on contemporary education to insure that scholars make creative and broadly informed contributions to the sociological analysis of schools. The contributors to this volume examine events currently influencing education including: globalization, expansion of educational access, the changing significance of religion, new family structures, and curriculum reform. Frontiers in Sociology of Education offers an innovative collection of research and ideas aimed at inspiring new analyses of schools better linked to changing societal conditions.

Reproductive Politics

Author: Rickie Solinger
Editor: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199811415
Size: 20,60 MB
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A concise, comprehensive guide to reproductive politics in America

No Place Like Home

Author: Christopher Carrington
Editor: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 9780226094847
Size: 18,24 MB
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In this rich, surprising portrait of the world of lesbian and gay relationships, Christopher Carrington unveils the complex and artful ways that gay people create and maintain both homes and "chosen" families for themselves. "Carefully separating stereotype from reality, Carrington investigates family in the gay and lesbian community. Relying upon interviews and observation, the author analyzes the loves and routings of 52 diverse lesbian, gay, and bisexual couples in the Bay area. . . . [He] closes the work with a discussion of the raging same-sex marriage debate and posits an enlightened solution to this dilemma." —Library Journal

Still Connected

Author: Claude S. Fischer
Editor: Russell Sage Foundation
ISBN: 1610447107
Size: 15,73 MB
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National news reports periodically proclaim that American life is lonelier than ever, and new books on the subject with titles like Bowling Alone generate considerable anxiety about the declining quality of Americans’ social ties. Still Connected challenges such concerns by asking a simple yet significant question: have Americans’ bonds with family and friends changed since the 1970s, and, if so, how? Noted sociologist Claude Fischer examines long-term trends in family ties and friendships and paints an insightful and ultimately reassuring portrait of Americans’ personal relationships. Still Connected analyzes forty years of survey research to address whether and how Americans’ personal ties have changed—their involvement with relatives, the number of friends they have and their contacts with those friends, the amount of practical and emotional support they are able to count on, and how emotionally tied they feel to these relationships. The book shows that Americans today have fewer relatives than they did forty years ago and that formal gatherings have declined over the decades—at least partially as a result of later marriages and more women in the work force. Yet neither the overall quantity of personal relationships nor, more importantly, the quality of those relationships has diminished. Americans’ contact with relatives and friends, as well as their feelings of emotional connectedness, has changed relatively little since the 1970s. Although Americans are marrying later and single people feel lonely, few Americans report being socially isolated and the percentage who do has not really increased. Fischer maintains that this constancy testifies to the value Americans place on family and friends and to their willingness to adapt to changing circumstances in ways that sustain their social connections. For example, children now often have schedules as busy as their parents. Yet today’s parents spend more quality time with their children than parents did forty years ago—although less in the form of organized home activities and more in the form of accompanying them to play dates or sports activities. And those family meals at home that seem to be disappearing? While survey research shows that families dine at home together less often, it also shows that they dine out together more often. Americans are fascinated by the quality of their relationships with family and friends and whether these bonds fray or remain stable over time. With so many voices heralding the demise of personal relationships, it’s no wonder that confusion on this topic abounds. An engrossing and accessible social history, Still Connected brings a much-needed note of clarity to the discussion. Americans’ personal ties, this book assures us, remain strong.

Parenting To A Degree

Author: Laura T. Hamilton
Editor: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022618367X
Size: 16,18 MB
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Helicopter parents—the kind that continue to hover even in college—are one of the most ridiculed figures of twenty-first-century parenting, criticized for creating entitled young adults who boomerang back home. But do involved parents really damage their children and burden universities? In this book, sociologist Laura T. Hamilton illuminates the lives of young women and their families to ask just what role parents play during the crucial college years. Hamilton vividly captures the parenting approaches of mothers and fathers from all walks of life—from a CFO for a Fortune 500 company to a waitress at a roadside diner. As she shows, parents are guided by different visions of the ideal college experience, built around classed notions of women’s work/family plans and the ideal age to “grow up.” Some are intensively involved and hold adulthood at bay to cultivate specific traits: professional helicopters, for instance, help develop the skills and credentials that will advance their daughters’ careers, while pink helicopters emphasize appearance, charm, and social ties in the hopes that women will secure a wealthy mate. In sharp contrast, bystander parents—whose influence is often limited by economic concerns—are relegated to the sidelines of their daughter’s lives. Finally, paramedic parents—who can come from a wide range of class backgrounds—sit in the middle, intervening in emergencies but otherwise valuing self-sufficiency above all. Analyzing the effects of each of these approaches with clarity and depth, Hamilton ultimately argues that successfully navigating many colleges and universities without involved parents is nearly impossible, and that schools themselves are increasingly dependent on active parents for a wide array of tasks, with intended and unintended consequences. Altogether, Parenting to a Degree offers an incisive look into the new—and sometimes problematic—relationship between students, parents, and universities.

Measuring Women S Political Empowerment Across The Globe

Author: Amy C. Alexander
Editor: Springer
ISBN: 3319640062
Size: 10,84 MB
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This volume brings together leading gender and politics scholars to assess how women’s political empowerment can best be conceptualized and measured on a global scale. It argues that women’s political empowerment is a fundamental process of transformation for benchmarking and understanding all political empowerment gains across the globe. Chapters improve our global understanding of women's political empowerment through cross-national comparisons, a synthesis of methodological approaches across varied levels of politics, and attention to the ways gender intersects with myriad factors in shaping women’s political empowerment. This book is an indispensable resource for scholars of politics and gender, as well as being relevant to a global scholarly and policy community.

Everyday Illegal

Author: Joanna Dreby
Editor: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520959272
Size: 10,16 MB
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What does it mean to be an illegal immigrant, or the child of immigrants, in this era of restrictive immigration laws in the United States? As lawmakers and others struggle to respond to the changing landscape of immigration, the effects of policies on people's daily lives are all too often overlooked. In Everyday Illegal, award-winning author Joanna Dreby recounts the stories of children and parents in eighty-one families to show what happens when a restrictive immigration system emphasizes deportation over legalization. Interweaving her own experiences, Dreby illustrates how bitter strains can arise in relationships when spouses have different legal status. She introduces us to "suddenly single mothers" who struggle to place food on the table and pay rent after their husbands have been deported. Taking us into the homes and schools of children living in increasingly vulnerable circumstances, she presents families that are divided internally, with some children having legal status while their siblings are undocumented. Even children who are U.S. citizens regularly associate immigration with illegality. With vivid ethnographic details and a striking narrative, Everyday Illegal forces us to confront the devastating impacts of our immigration policies as seen through the eyes of children and their families. As legal status influences identity formation, alters the division of power within families, and affects the opportunities children have outside the home, it becomes a growing source of inequality that ultimately touches us all.

Unmarried Couples With Children

Author: Paula England
Editor: Russell Sage Foundation
ISBN: 1610441869
Size: 14,65 MB
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Today, a third of American children are born outside of marriage, up from one child in twenty in the 1950s, and rates are even higher among low-income Americans. Many herald this trend as one of the most troubling of our time. But the decline in marriage does not necessarily signal the demise of the two parent family—over 80 percent of unmarried couples are still romantically involved when their child is born and nearly half are living together. Most claim they plan to marry eventually. Yet half have broken up by their child's third birthday. What keeps some couples together and what tears others apart? After a breakup, how do fathers so often disappear from their children's lives? An intimate portrait of the challenges of partnering and parenting in these families, Unmarried Couples with Children presents a variety of unique findings. Most of the pregnancies were not explicitly planned, but some couples feel having a child is the natural course of a serious relationship. Many of the parents are living with their child plus the mother’s child from a previous relationship. When the father also has children from a previous relationship, his visits to see them at their mother’s house often cause his current partner to be jealous. Breakups are more often driven by sexual infidelity or conflict than economic problems. After couples break up, many fathers complain they are shut out, especially when the mother has a new partner. For their part, mothers claim to limit dads’ access to their children because of their involvement with crime, drugs, or other dangers. For couples living together with their child several years after the birth, marriage remains an aspiration, but something couples are resolutely unwilling to enter without the financial stability they see as a sine qua non of marriage. They also hold marriage to a high relational standard, and not enough emotional attention from their partners is women’s number one complaint. Unmarried Couples with Children is a landmark study of the family lives of nearly fifty American children born outside of a marital union at the dawn of the twenty-first century. Based on personal narratives gathered from both mothers and fathers over the first four years of their children’s lives, and told partly in the couples' own words, the story begins before the child is conceived, takes the reader through the tumultuous months of pregnancy to the moment of birth, and on through the child's fourth birthday. It captures in rich detail the complex relationship dynamics and powerful social forces that derail the plans of so many unmarried parents. The volume injects some much-needed reality into the national discussion about family values, and reveals that the issues are more complex than our political discourse suggests.

Same Sex Marriage

Author: Kathleen Hull
Editor: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 052185654X
Size: 14,80 MB
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Fierce and sometimes ugly battles are being waged, especially in America, over who is allowed to marry, and what marriage signifies. By examining these debates and the data from over seventy interviews, Kathleen Hull explores the cultural practices around same-sex marriage as well as the legal battles for recognition.