Marriages and Families in the 21st Century

Marriages and Families in the 21st Century
A Bioecological Approach

Second Edition

July 2017 | 704 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

Creating a cohesive overview of modern family life that helps students visualize the complex influences affecting all people in families, this updated Second Edition uses a bioecological framework that takes into account our status as both biological and social beings. The text covers all the important issues—parenting, divorce, aging families, balancing work and family, family violence, and gender issues—emphasizing the individual's interactions with larger systemic influences—from family, peers, neighbors and teachers, to schools, media, institutions, and culture. Using a strengths-based approach, the book allows students to evaluate the health and functioning of a family considering the biological and cultural milieu in which it exists, rather than on its observable structure or appearance alone. An accessible writing style coupled with student-friendly pedagogical features help readers come to a multi-layered understanding of "what makes families tick," while also challenging them to reevaluate their own assumptions and experiences.

Chapter 1: The Changing American Family
What is a Family?  
Family Structures vs. Family Processes  
The Evolution of American Families  
The Approach and Organizational Structure of this Book  
Chapter 2: How We Study the Family: Theories and Research Methods
Overview: The Need for Good Theory and Research Design  
Theoretical Frameworks  
Research Methodology  
Demographic Issues in Research  
Chapter 3: Sex and Gender
Overview: A Bioecological Approach to Sex and Gender  
What’s the Difference Between Sex and Gender  
The Importance of Gender for Living in Families  
Gender and Sexual Orientation  
Gender Discrimination and Sexism  
Theories of Gender Role Development  
Our Development into Boys and Girls and Men and Women  
Chapter 4: Sexualities
Overview of Influences on Sexuality  
Macrosystem and Historical Influences on Sex and Sexualities  
Trends in Sexual behavior and Attitudes About Sex  
Sex Organs: The Way They Work and How Things Go Awry  
Sexual Orientation  
A Closer Look at Current Issues in Sexuality  
Chapter 5: Dating and Mate Selection
Development and Change in Courtship, Dating, Hooking up, and Mate Selection  
A Bioecological Examination of Dating and Mate Selection  
Theories of Dating and Mate Selection  
Diversity in Dating and Mate Selection  
Contemporary Trends Around the World  
Chapter 6: Love
What is Love?  
Is Love Universal?  
Biological Aspects of Love  
The Social Contexts of Love: Attachment Theory  
A Final Note: Enhancing the Quality of  
Chapter 7: Marriages and Committed Partnerships
Overview of Contemporary Marriage Trends  
Health Benefits of Happy Marriages  
A Historical Examination of Marriage  
Types of Marriage  
Marital Problems  
Healthy Processes in Marriages  
Chapter 8: Living Single
Overview of Singlehood  
Unique Challenges Facing Singles  
The Normative Life Cycle Model  
The Diverse Lives of Single People  
Macrosystem Forces Against Singlehood  
The Psychological and Physical Health of Single People  
Single through Commitment to God  
Final Reflections  
Chapter 9: Reproduction and Parenting
Overview: To Parent or Not to Parent  
Historical Trends in Parenting  
Reproduction and Birth  
The Transition to Parenthood  
Infertility and Innovative Ways to Become A Parent  
Parenting Infants and Children  
The Many Faces of Parenthood  
Community Development and the Macrosystem  
Chapter 10: The Economy of Working Families: Balancing Mental, Physical, and Financial Health in the Twenty-First Century
Overview of Economic Trends  
Diversity in Work and Family Life  
Balancing Work and Family  
Living on the Extremes of the Socioeconomic Continuum: Poverty and Wealth  
Chapter 11: Families in Crisis: Violence, Abuse and Neglect
Overview: The Pervasive Nature of Violence  
Elder Abuse and Neglect  
Animal Abuse  
Intimate Partner Violence  
Child Maltreatment  
Chapter 12: Divorce and Remarriage
Overview: Trends in Divorce and Remarriage  
The Complexities of Divorce  
The Effects of Divorce  
Reducing the Negative Impact of Divorce  
Chapter 13: Growing Older in Families
Overview: Historical and Cultural Beliefs About Aging  
Multidimensional Changes with Age  
Family Life Across Generations  
Chapter 14: The Evolution of Families in the Twenty-First Century
Five Key Ideas for Understanding Marriages and Families  
General Trends in Multiculturalism  
Gender and Sexual Orientation in the Twenty-First Century  
An in-Depth Look at Immigration  
Final Reflections on the Future of Families  
Glossary of Key Terms
Key features

  • Up-to-date coverage includes discussions of changing social policies affecting families, such as the legalization of same-sex marriage in the US, and the long-term effects on family functioning of the economic downturn and our slow recovery from it.
  • Hundreds of new references from 2009-2016 span multiple disciplines and offer an increased focus on LGBT populations, families of color, and international families.
  • A completely updated final chapter focuses on the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals and an analysis of the global impact of the refugee crisis.

  • Individual chapters cover historical and cultural trends and also explore the biological, personal, and social forces that shape individuals and families.
  • Recent research in neuroscience, medicine, and biopsychology examines how family relationships are shaped by and influence individuals' biological functioning.
  • Focus on my Family boxes profile real families through personal essays about their diverse experiences.
  • How Would You Measure That? sections enhance students' critical thinking skills and their ability to analyze research designs and conclusions.
  • Building Your Strengths exercises help students analyze their own families' strengths and include psychometrically sound self-assessments.
  • Balanced coverage integrates contemporary, real-world examples with important theory and research.

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ISBN: 9781506340968