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Reassessing Fatherhood: New Observations on…
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Reassessing Fatherhood: New Observations on Fathers and the Modern Family

by Charles N Lewis

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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0803980205, Paperback)

Much recent literature on fathers conveys the optimistic message that men are becoming increasingly involved in family life and that such participation is necessarily beneficial. This book contends that evidence for the `new father' is, in reality, hard to find and that the paternal role persists in being limited by social, institutional and personal forces.

The book's contributors, psychologists and sociologists from Britain, Australia, Scandanavia and North America, examine the problematic nature of fatherhood from three different perspectives. Part One examines research evidence from studies of fathers in `typical' families. Chapters look at the history of paternal roles, the employment of both fathers and mothers and men's involvement with other members of the family; all share the thesis that, given contemporary ideologies, fathering is necessarily limited.

Part Two critically reviews research on men who -- encouraged by `enlightened' social policy makers -- have attempted to become more involved in child care and domestic responsibilities. The contributors point out the contradictions between the expectations of the policy makers and the realities of family life: greater involvement in the home by men usually causes stress and difficulties for other members, particularly mothers.

Part Three considers the position of men in therapeutic settings, where the father is often seen as a passive, opaque figure with whom it is difficult to work, and offers sound advice on how family workers can incorporate men into counselling, social work and therapy. Two chapters also investigate the role that custody arrangements play in the divorced father's life.

Reassessing Fatherhood provides a fresh -- and often provocative -- view of the modern father that will change the complacent and euphoric vision of the `new family'.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:51 -0400)

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