Parenthood and Social Reproduction: Fostering and Occupational Roles in West Africa

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Over the last twenty years, Esther Goody has made extensive studies of traditional and contemporary patterns of education and child-rearing in West Africa. In this book she provides an account of the rich variety of institutions, such as fostering, apprenticeship and wardship, which have developed in West Africa either in absence of, or alongside, formal schools, to prepare children for the wide range of economic and political roles now available to them in adult society. Drawing on her work in West Africa and with West Africans in London, Dr Goody shows that among many groups it is common practice to send children to grow up away from home. As a cross-cultural study of a central kinship institution - parenthood - and of processes of change in adult role allocation, the book is of interest to social anthropologists, sociologists, educationalists and social psychologists.

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Table of Contents

List of tables; List of figures; Acknowledgements; Introduction; 1. A framework for the analysis of parent roles; Part I. Parent Roles in Gonja: 2. Kinship fostering; 3. The Kpembe study; Part II. Parent Roles in West Africa: 4. The circulation of women and children in northern Ghana with Jack Goody; 5. Traditional states: responses to hierarchy and differentiation; 6. Contemporary patterns in southern Ghana; 7. Fostering contrasted; 8. Modern apprenticeship: response to differentiation; 9. Creole wardship: response to hierarchy; Part III. Beyond West Africa: 10. The quest for education with Christine Muir Groothues; 11. West African and West Indian immigrant families; 12. Parenthood and social reproduction; Appendix I: data from the Kpembe study; Appendix II: data on the southern Ghana surveys; Notes; Bibliography; Index; Index of authors.

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