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Seminar 15

Seminar 15: The Twenty-First Century Family Families have never been simple or uniform. Lower life expectancy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries meant that children could grow up with a lone parent or by other relatives or in care. While illegitimacy rates were relatively low, there were still many children brought up by unmarried mothers, by their grandmothers or adopted. War meant children grew up without fathers, some never returned. Lone parent families have been constantly seen as a problem, however, and in this seminar we will examine how and why this has occurred. Seminar/Essay Questions:
  1. Are step-families a late twentieth century development?
  2. How and why lave lone-parent families been stigmatised?
  3. Why have patterns of family life have changed so much in the last thirty years?
Seminar Reading: J. Ermisch and M. Francwesconi, ‘The Increasing Complexity of Family Relationships: Lifetime Experience of Lone Motherhood and Stepfamilies in Great Britain’ European Journal of Population 16 (2000), 235-49. J. Fink, ‘Natural Mothers, Putative Fathers, and Innocent Children: The Definition and Regulation of Parental Relationships Outside Marriage, in England, 1945-1959’, Journal of Family History 25 (2000) 178-195. J. Millar, ‘State, Family and Personal Responsibility: The Changing Balance for Lone Mothers in the United Kingdom’ Feminist Review 48 (1994) 24 -39 V. Randall, ‘The Irresponsible State? The Politics of Child Daycare Provision in Britain’ British Journal of Political Science 25 (1995) 327-348. E. Shorter ‘Illegitimacy, Sexual Revolution and Social Change in Modern Europe’ Journal of Interdisciplinary History 2 (1971) 237-272.Additional Reading: J. Burgoyne and D. Clark, Making a Go of It (1984). D. Clark (ed.), Marriage, Domestic Life and Social Change: Writings for Jacqueline Burgoyne (1991). D. Coleman, ‘Population and Family’ in A. H. Halsey and J. Webb, Twentieth-Century British Social Trends (2000). R. Crompton, Restructuring Gender Relations and Employment: The Decline of the Male Breadwinner (1999). M. Drabble, The Millstone (1968). M. Durham, Sex and Politics: The Family and Morality in the Thatcher Years (1991). G. Gorell Barnes, P. Thompson, G. Daniel, and N. Burchardt, Growing Up in Stepfamilies (1997). D. Gittins, The Family in Question (1985). A. Holdsworth, Out of the Doll’s House (1988). K. Kiernan, H. Land and J. Lewis, Lone Motherhood in twentieth Century Britain: From Footnote to Front Page (1998). P. Letts, Double Struggle - Sex Discrimination and One-Parent Families (1983). J. Lewis, ‘The Problem of Lone-mother Families in Twentieth-century Britain’ Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law 20 (1998) 251-83. S. McRae, Changing Britain: Families and Households in the 1990s (1999). J. Millar, ‘Poor Mothers and “Absent Fathers”: Support for Lone Parents in Comparative Perspective’ in H. Jones and J. Millar (eds.), The Politics of the Family (1996). J. Muncie (ed.), Understanding the Family (1997). A. Phoenix, Young Mothers? (1991). R. Rapoport and R. N. Rapoport, Dual-Career Families (1971). J. Renvoize, Going Solo: Single Mothers by Choice (1985). J. Ribbens McCarthy, R. Edwards, Rosalind and V. Gillies, Making Families: Moral Tales of Parenting and Step-parenting (2003) E. Roberts, Women and Families: An Oral History 1940-1970 (1995). E. B. Silva (ed.), Good Enough Mothering? Feminist Perspectives on Lone Motherhood (1995). C. Tilly, (ed.), Historical Studies in Changing Fertility (1978). A. Van Drenth, T. Knijn and J. Lewis, ‘Sources of Income for Lone Mother Families: Policy Changes in Britain and the Netherlands and the Experiences of Divorced Women’ Journal of Social Policy 28 (1999) 619-641. J. Weeks et al, Same Sex Intimacies - Families of Choice and Other Life Experiments (2001). J. Williams, H. Twort and A. Bachelli, ‘Women and the family’, in M. Wandor, Once a Feminist: Stories of a Generation (1990).