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Family Theories
An Introduction

Fifth Edition


January 2019 | 360 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Family Theories: An Introduction by James M. White, Todd F. Martin, and new co-author Kari Adamsons provides an incisive, thorough primer to current theories of the family that balances the diversity and richness of a broad scope of scholarly work in a concise manner. This best-selling text draws upon eight major theoretical frameworks developed by key social scientists to explain variation in family life. These frameworks include social exchange and choice, symbolic-interaction, family life course development, systems, conflict, feminist, ecological, and functional theories.

This new Fifth Edition includes suggestions for integrating theory to guide a research program and more applications for those going on to careers in the helping professions. With an increased focus on both classical theories as well as contemporary and emerging theories, this text challenges students to think about how families and family theories have changed over the last 70 years as well as where family scholarship is headed.



 
Foreword
 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
Chapter 1 What Is a Theory?
Architecture of a Scientific Theory

 
Defining Theory

 
Functions of Theory

 
Theories About Families

 
Evaluation of Theory

 
Frameworks

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 2 Classical Social Theories and Family Theories
Philosophies of Science

 
Values in Science

 
What Is an Explanation?

 
Classical Social Theories

 
A Brief History of Family Theory

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 3 The Rational Choice and Social Exchange Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 4 The Symbolic Interaction Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 5 The Family Life Course Development Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 6 The Systems Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 7 The Conflict and Critical Theories Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 8 The Feminist Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 9 The Ecological Framework
Intellectual Traditions

 
Focus and Scope Assumptions

 
Concepts

 
Propositions

 
Variations

 
Empirical Applications

 
Critiques and Discussion

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 10 Theory Construction and Emerging Theories
Stages of Theory Construction

 
Methods of Theory Construction

 
Strategies of Theory Construction

 
Emerging Theories

 
Conclusion

 
Study Questions

 
 
Chapter 11 Epilogue
Metatheory and Theory Development

 
The Future of Family Theory

 
Conclusion

 
 
References
 
Index
 
About the Authors

“This text offers a deeper level of theoretical analysis than other textbook options. It is particularly helpful for those preparing for graduate education.”

Bethany Willis Hepp, PhD
Towson University

“This book does a great job of speaking of each theory--functionalism, social exchange, symbolic interaction, life course, etc.--in an easy to understand, digestible way for students.”      

Richard N Pitt
Vanderbilt University

“It uses scientific language that is necessary to introduce students to the frameworks of theories in general, as well as those that are specifically used within the field of marital and familial studies.” 

Lauren Dick, M.S
Carthage College

“It is probably the most comprehensive text specifically on Family Theories that I have seen."

Duane Alan Dowd, Ph.D.
CFLE Associate professor and Department Chair, Central Washington University

We chose the text because it covered the frameworks that we had already deemed appropriate. We also liked the

assumption/concept/prop format.”

Michelle Sherwood, Prof
Internship and Family Services Program Coordinator, Eastern Illinois University

Chose a different textbook

Dr Shari Moxley
Sch Of Human Environmental Sci, Univ Of Arkansas-Fayetteville
September 30, 2019

This book was originally chosen by another professor before the class was assigned to me. However, this was a class on human development theories not family theories so it didn't fit. However, considered using for family theories at a later time.

Dr Shari Moxley
Sch Of Human Environmental Sci, Univ Of Arkansas-Fayetteville
April 3, 2019
Key features
NEW TO THIS EDITION:
  • New co-author Kari Adamsons brings a wealth of teaching experience and academic research to this edition.
  • Chapter 10 has been completely revised with a focus on emerging theories as well as theory construction.
  • All chapters are updated and expanded, including a concentrated focus on scientific facts and why they change with new technology and methodology.
  • Critical thinking study questions have been added at the end of each chapter.
KEY FEATURES:
  • Brief fictional vignettes introduce each theoretical framework, concretely illustrating for students how the theory relates to very real aspects of family life.
  • All chapters follow a uniform format that allows students to more easily compare and contrast theories.
  • Each chapter includes a typology for analyzing and comparing the eight frameworks while providing direction for future theory development.
  • Chapters end with critiques, conclusions and critical thinking study questions.


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