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Families in Context

An Introduction

Marilyn Ihinger-Tallman and Teresa M. Cooney

Publication Date - 03 December 2004

ISBN: 9780195330250

414 pages
8 x 10 inches

This comprehensive but concise text introduces foundational ideas and concepts about families and applies them to issues and events relevant to today's college student population.


Marilyn Ihinger-Tallman and Teresa M. Cooney's Families in Context introduces foundational ideas and concepts about families and applies them to issues and events relevant to today's college student population. This comprehensive but concise paperback--written in clear, student-friendly language--fills the following needs not being met by existing texts:

* The text is structured consistently, featuring an overarching framework that combines family systems theory and ecological systems theory. This approach bridges both micro- and macro-perspectives on families.
* Each chapter places families squarely within their respective environments--their neighborhood, community, and national context--and provides conceptual linkages between the different aspects of family life.
* Diversity is integrated into each chapter. * The text's emphasis on social context allows the exploration of families in at least three ways: (1) how individuals live out their intimate experiences within families and communities; (2) the impact of family groups on their neighborhoods and communities, and vice versa; and (3) the ways in which the larger social contexts influence families within different class levels and racial groups.
* The book's brevity and reasonable price allow ample time for instructors to easily supplement their courses with additional materials.
Each chapter opens with a "Did You Know?" box, detailing ideas related to chapter content and preparing students for the chapter's topics. Similarly, a box entitled "Things to Think About" offers questions, definitions, or comments intended to provoke students' critical thinking.

The text provides a "hands-on" approach by featuring critical-thinking activities at the end of each chapter, enabling students to apply learned concepts and principles. Finally, additional readings and a glossary of relevant theoretical concepts are provided.

Table of Contents

    Chapter 1: Studying Families: Micro and Macro Perspectives
    Families, Communities, Society: Interconnections
    What Is a System?
    Families as Small Groups
    The Family as an Institution
    Ecological Systems Perspective
    Diversity Among Families
    Family Structure
    Sex and Gender Differences
    Methods for Studying Families
    Chapter 2: Commitment: To Self, Family, Community
    The Importance of Commitment
    Commitment to Self
    Socialization: The Creation of Identities and the Self
    Commitment to Family
    The Big Picture: Commitment to Community
    Chapter 3: Developing Close Relationships: Making Lifestyle Choices
    Building Intimate Relationships
    Social and Behavioral Processes That Bring Couples Together
    Lifestyle Choices
    The Big Picture: The Influence of Macrolevel Forces on the Formation of Intimate Relationships
    Sex, Sexuality, and Gender Roles
    Chapter 4: Maintaining Intimacy: Marriage and Enduring Unions
    Marriage Patterns: Historical Trends and Racial and Social Class Differences
    Transition to Marriage
    Accompanying Marriage
    The Internal Dynamics of Marriage
    The Big Picture
    Chapter 5: Moving Through the Life Cycle: Family Experiences in Early to Middle
    The Transition to Parenthood
    Parenting Changes From Childhood Through Adolescence
    Sibling Relationships in Childhood
    Couple Subsystems
    The Big Picture: Historical Change Affecting Young Families
    Chapter 6: Moving Through the Life Cycle: Family Experiences in Middle to Late
    Renegotiating Parent-Child Relationships in Late Adolescence and Early Adulthood
    Adjusting to the Empty Nest Period
    Parents and Children in Middle to Late Adulthood
    Aged Parents and Adult Children
    Marital Relations in Middle to Late Adulthood
    Adult Sibling Relations
    Experiencing the Death of Family Members
    The Big Picture: Societal Influences on Family Relationships Across Adulthood
    Chapter 7: Balancing Work and Family
    Labor Force Participation
    Work-Family Spillover
    Household Division of Labor
    Housework in Different Types of Families
    Cohabitation, Marriage, Remarriage, and Housework Contributions
    The Fairness Issue
    Changing Norms: What Has Changed?
    Children's Work
    Effects of Unemployment on the Family
    The Big Picture: Family and Work in the Larger Society Macrosystem
    Chapter 8: Family Transitions: Divorce, Single Parenting, Remarriage
    Parenting After Divorce
    Children in Single-Parent Households
    Remarriage and Stepparenting
    Death as the Cause of Marital Dissolution
    The Big Picture: Family Transitions in a Social Context
    Chapter 9: Distressed Families: The Darker Side of Family Life
    Partner Violence
    The Demographics of Partner Violence
    Marital Rape
    Violence Among Same-Sex Couples
    Child Maltreatment
    Abuse of Siblings and Parents
    Elder Abuse and Neglect
    Alcoholism and Substance Addiction
    Children Who Run Away
    If They Are Family, Why Are They Mistreated?
    The Big Picture: The Social and Cultural Context of Violence
    Chapter 10: Families in a Social Context: The Big Picture
    Beyond the Family Microsystem
    Governmental Exosystem and Macro-Level Influences
    Author Index
    Subject Index