Taking Parenting Public / Edition 1

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Overview

Taking Parenting Public makes a compelling case that parenting has become dangerously undervalued in America today. It calls for a new investment-both personal and public-into the work of raising children and argues that we are all "stockholders" in the next generation. With a foreword by Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Cornel West, "Taking Parenting Public" crosses boundaries to bring together thinkers from diverse fields spanning the political spectrum. It features contributions from distinguished experts in economics, political science, public policy, child development, public health, history, and the media. While recent books have focused on working mothers or absent fathers, "Taking Parenting Public" is the first volume to take a comprehensive look at the common struggles of parents. These essays go beyond the usual chest-beating about busy parents torn between work and family demands to suggest bold solutions. Instead of the typical call for "parent replacement"-more child care, more after school programs and more mentors-the contributors offer fresh strategies for "parent replenishment", ways to put mothers and fathers back into the lives of their children not only as economic providers, but also as emotional and moral providers.

Author Biography: Sylvia Ann Hewlett is founder and chairman of the National Parenting Association. Her books include "A Lesser Life", "When the Bough Breaks", and co-author with Cornel West of "The War Against Parents". Cornel West is the Alphonse Fletcher Jr. University Professor at Harvard University. He is the author of numerous articles and books including "Prophetic Fragments", "Race Matters", and "The War Against Parents", co-authored with SylviaHewlett. Nancy Rankin is Director of Research and Programs at the National Parenting Association.

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Editorial Reviews

Journal Of Marriage and Family
Highly readable and engaging. The case for a parents' movement is compellingly, cogently, and eloquently made in Taking Parenting Public. There is much to recommend this book.
The Insider
Outstanding documents that will contribute to the knowledge base of the human service field.
Journal of Marriage and Family
Highly readable and engaging. The case for a parents' movement is compellingly, cogently, and eloquently made in Taking Parenting Public. There is much to recommend this book.
Bob Kerrey
An impressive list of contributors has brought these critical issues about parenting to our attention in a cogent and persuasive way. I highly recommend this book for leaders in the public and private sectors who must consider both the economic and social impacts of this issue on our families and our nation.
Heidi Hartmann
Whether you're a feminist, a conservative, a liberal, or a troglodyte, you'll find plenty of new ideas in this volume to stir you up—both for and against. Together, these essays argue convincingly that effective parenting must be supported by a substantial public investment.
Ellen Galinsky
Reading this book feels like having a rich conversation about raising children in today's world with a group of very impressive thinkers. While these thinkers bring diverse points of view about the problems facing parents today, they agree that parents are struggling—they have too many demands and not enough time or support. While these thinkers also have different views of the solutions, they likewise agree that parenting must be seen as a public rather than a private concern of society. These agreements should be a very powerful force in bringing about needed changes that will benefit children and families.
Ellen Bravo
Hats off to Sylvia Hewlett, Nancy Rankin, and Cornel West for urging us to take parenting public. Parenting is highly revered in the U.S.—as long as it's done by women for free. It's high time parents got together to work for the supports they need.
William Julius Wilson
An important and timely book that features thoughtful chapters by a diverse group of writers, including some of the most influential scholars and policy analysts in the nation. Rich substantive arguments and policy insights flow throughout the volume.
Hedrick Smith
A vital volume that illuminates the daily crisis in American life–the chronic tension between work and family that confronts tens of millions of working parents. For all Americans, this book shows the high social costs of raising children with a workforce of dual career families or single parents in an outdated economic system that presumes a nation of stay-at-home moms. It presents a compelling case for fundamental changes in how we organize work to strike a better balance between job and home. It offers and agenda for reforming public policy and tells why all of us have a stake in reform.
Beatrix A. Hamburg
This evidence-based book clarifies the causes and grievous consequences of the array of societal changes that have undermined parental authority and family functioning across all sectors of our population. The volume relies on scholarly commissioned papers along with results of focus groups and sophisticated survey data. A persuasive case is made for broad-based commitment to the implementation of sound social policy, both public and private, to address major concerns and needs of parents in the 21st Century. Doing so, will alleviate their personal pain as well as reducing the national losses of human potential and productivity for both parents and their children.
Deborah Holmes
The wonderful thing about Taking Parenting Public is that it doesn't just analyze the challenges of parenting in the U.S. today—though it does that, in intelligent and compelling detail—but it actually suggests solutions. This is a must-read for anyone who wants to move beyond the current state.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742521117
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/28/2002
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Sylvia Ann Hewlett is founder and chairman of the National Parenting Association. Her books include A Lesser Life, When the Bough Breaks, and co-author with Cornel West of The War Against Parents. Nancy Rankin is the former executive director of the National Parenting Association. Cornel West is the Alphonse Fletcher Jr. University Professor at Harvard University. He is the author of numerous articles and books including Prophetic Fragments, Race Matters, and The War Against Parents, co-authored with Sylvia Hewlett.

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Table of Contents

List of Boxes, Figures, and Tables
Acknowledgments
Preface: The Challenge
Introduction 1
Pt. 1 The Cultural Marketplace
1 On Rekindling a Spirit of "Home Training": A Mother's Notes from the Front 13
2 Empty Parenthood: The Loss of Parental Authority in the Postmodern Family 29
3 From Father Knows Best to The Simpsons - On TV, Parenting Has Lost Its Halo 45
Pt. 2 The Economic Marketplace
4 The Economic Status of Parents in Postwar America 59
5 Time Crunch among American Parents 83
6 Low-Income Parents and the Time Famine 103
Pt. 3 The Political Marketplace
7 Political Trends among American Parents: The 1950s to 1996 119
8 Taxes and the Family: A Conservative Perspective 139
9 Observations on Some Proposals to Help Parents: A Progressive Perspective 155
10 Back to the Future: A GI Bill for the Twenty-First Century 175
Pt. 4 Building Public Will and Political Power to Help Parents
11 The Paths from Here 209
12 What It Will Take to Build a Family-Friendly America 219
13 The Emerging Fatherhood Movement: Making Room for Daddy 235
14 The Parent Vote 251
15 Fixing Social Insecurity: A Proposal to Finance Parenthood 265
Conclusion
16 Taking Parenting Public 275
Index 285
About the Contributors 291
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