Gender and Parenthood: Biological and Social Scientific Perspectives

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W. Bradford Wilcox, Kathleen Kovner Kline
Columbia University Press, Feb 12, 2013 - Psychology - 376 pages
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The essays in this collection deploy biological and social scientific perspectives to evaluate the transformative experience of parenthood for today's women and men. They map the similar and distinct roles mothers and fathers play in their children's lives and measure the effect of gendered parenting on child well-being, work and family arrangements, and the quality of couples' relationships.

Contributors describe what happens to brains and bodies when women become mothers and men become fathers; whether the stakes are the same or different for each sex; why, across history and cultures, women are typically more involved in childcare than men; why some fathers are strongly present in their children's lives while others are not; and how the various commitments men and women make to parenting shape their approaches to paid work and romantic relationships. Considering recent changes in men's and women's familial duties, the growing number of single-parent families, and the impassioned tenor of same-sex marriage debates, this book adds sound scientific and theoretical insight to these issues, constituting a standout resource for those interested in the causes and consequences of contemporary gendered parenthood.


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The Dynamic Nature of the Parental Brain
Lessons from
Human Parenting from an Evolutionary Perspective
Parenting Gender Culture Time
Gender Differences and Similarities in Parental Behavior
Gender and Parenting Across the Family Life Cycle
Essential Elements of the Caretaking Crucible
Do Fathers Uniquely Matter for Adolescent WellBeing?
WorkFamily Strategies the Gendered
List of Contributors

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About the author (2013)

W. Bradford Wilcox is director of the National Marriage Project and associate professor of sociology at the University of Virginia. His research focuses on fatherhood, marriage, and cohabitation in the United States and around the globe.

Kathleen Kovner Kline is a child psychiatrist who has served on the medical school faculties of Dartmouth College, the University of Colorado, and currently the University of Pennsylvania. She also serves as chief medical officer of the Consortium, a community mental health organization in Philadelphia.

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