The book addresses:What is "good" fathering? How do daughters influence their fathers' well-being? How do fathers affect their daughters' social, academic, athletic, and psychological development? How are problems such as depression, eating disorders, and teenage pregnancy related to the quality of these relationships? How are father-daughter relationships in ethnic and racial groups unique? How do incarceration, abuse, gay or lesbian relationships, military service, immigration, and poverty affect father-daughter relationships?
The book opens with the importance of the father’s role on daughters and the changing patterns of these roles. Chapter 2 examines the myths and misconceptions of father-daughter relationships including how they are portrayed in the media and the differences between parenting styles. Chapter 3 explores the behaviors that constitute "good" fathering. Scales used to measure "good" fathering are included. How fathers affect their daughters’ social, academic, intellectual, athletic, and psychological development is then considered. Factors that can weaken father-daughter relationships, such as divorce, including various theoretical perspectives, are explored in chapters 5 and 6. Father-daughter relationships of racial or ethnic minorities and an array of potentially destructive situations that affect these relationships are the focus of chapters 7 and 8. The impact of fathers who are incarcerated, abusive, alcoholics, gay, or sperm donors are considered. The book concludes with suggestions on where we go from here.
Intended as a supplemental text for upper-level undergraduate or graduate courses on father-daughter relationships and/or parenting taught in human development, family studies, psychology, sociology, counseling, social work, and women’s studies, this practical book also appeals to mental health practitioners, social workers, legal professionals, and school counselors interested in these relationships.
In thoughtful interviews, Don Unger tells the stories of a half dozen families—of varied ethnicities, geographical locations, and philosophical orientations—in which fathers are either primary or equally sharing parents, personalizing what is changing in how Americans care for their children. These stories are complemented by a discussion of how the language of parenting has evolved and how media representations of fathers have shifted over several decades.
Men Can shows how real change can take place when families divide up domestic labor on a gender-neutral basis. The families whose stories he tells offer insights into the struggles of—and opportunities for—men caring for children. When it comes to taking up the responsibility of parenting, his argument, ultimately, is in favor of respecting personal choices and individual differences, crediting and supporting functional families, rather than trying to force every household into a one-size-fits-all mold.
Contributors describe what happens to brains and bodies when women become mothers and men become fathers; whether the stakes are the same or different for each sex; why, across history and cultures, women are typically more involved in childcare than men; why some fathers are strongly present in their children’s lives while others are not; and how the various commitments men and women make to parenting shape their approaches to paid work and romantic relationships. Considering recent changes in men’s and women’s familial duties, the growing number of single-parent families, and the impassioned tenor of same-sex marriage debates, this book adds sound scientific and theoretical insight to these issues, constituting a standout resource for those interested in the causes and consequences of contemporary gendered parenthood.
The volume includes chapters highlighting the unique challenges and possibilities of father involvement in their children’s early years of development. Contributing authors have integrated theories, research, policies, and programs on father involvement so as to attract readers with diverse interest and expertise, and material from selected countries in Asia, Australia, and Africa, as well as North America, evinces the international scope of their analysis. Their often interdisciplinary analyses draw, too, on historical and cultural legacies, even as they project a vision of the future in which fathers’ involvement in their young children’s lives develops alongside the changing political, economic and educational landscapes around the world.
Included in the coverage:
• The adjustment and development of African American males: Conceptual frameworks and emerging research opportunities.
• A trauma-informed approach to affirming the humanity of African American boys and supporting healthy transitions to manhood.
• Humanizing developmental science to promote positive development of young men of color.
• Families, prisoner reentry, and reintegration.
• Safe spaces for vulnerability: New perspectives on African Americans who struggle to be good fathers.
• They can’t breathe: Why neighborhoods matter for the health of African American men and boys.
Promoting diversity in the research agenda to reflect a diverse population, Boys and Men in African American Families is an invaluable reference for research professionals particularly interested in sociology, public policy, anthropology, urban and rural studies, and African American studies. Survey and ethnographic studies of poverty, inequality, family processes, and child, adolescent, and adult health and development are featured./div