Lost Fathers

Lost Fathers : The Politics of Fatherlessness in America

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The concept of fatherlessness has emerged at the centre of debates over welfare, poverty, sexuality, divorce, family values and "racial disorder". Do children need fathers? Do mothers need husbands? Should we celebrate or grieve the loss (or transformation) of fatherhood? Is there a relation between "fatherlessness" and the destitution and crime of inner city communities? Or is talk about "fatherlessness" simply a political diversion from the true sources of inequality and social disruption? This collection brings together the voices of nine diverse scholars to reflect on the culturally and politically charged concept of "fatherlessness" and to illustrate the deep and dramatic divisions which constitute public debate on this issue. The book offers a range of perspectives, from conservative to radical feminist, on the issue of father absence.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 208 pages
  • 139 x 209 x 15mm | 247g
  • Basingstoke, United Kingdom
  • 0333913906
  • 9780333913901

Author information

CYNTHIA R. DANIELS is Associate Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University. She is the author of At Women's Expense: State Power and the Politics of Fetal Rights, and winner of the Victoria Schuck Award from the American Political Science Association for best book in the field of women and politics.
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Table of contents

Acknowledgements Introduction; C.R.Daniels The History and Politics of Fatherlessness; R.L.Griswold Life without Father; D. Popenoe Dada-ism in the Nineties: Getting Past Baby Talk About Fatherlessness; J. Stacey Growing Up Without a Father; S. McLanahan 'This River Runs Deep': Father Myths and Single Mothers in Poor America; L. Dodson The Lost Children; J.B.Elshtain The Absent Black Father; D.Roberts Father Hunger; M.Gallagher Fatherhood and Its Discontents: Men, Patriarchy, and Freedom; D.Cornell
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Review quote

'A timely presentation of basic arguments on this polarized issue.' - Booklist '[A]n interesting and multifaceted discussion...[T]his book makes a solid and learned contribution to the public policy discussion.' - Library Journal 'Lost Fathers ...defines the battle lines. In one camp are those who think marriage and fatherhood are essential to socialize men, producing a stability which protects women and children and underpins liberal democratic society. In the other are those who believe that marriage is a patriarchal conspiracy against women, that gender differences are an oppressive social construct and that family life should be reconstituted around egalitarianism and androgyny.' - Times Literary Supplement
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Rating details

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