Unsung Heroines: Single Mothers and the American Dream / Edition 1

Unsung Heroines: Single Mothers and the American Dream / Edition 1

by Ruth Sidel
     
 


"This pioneering new study by Ruth Sidel is an education for the nation. Sidel shatters all the old familiar negative myths and harsh stereotypes about single mothers, and gives us instead the unvarnished truth about their diverse lives, their courageous struggles to raise their children, and their genuine family values—values they share with millions of… See more details below

Overview


"This pioneering new study by Ruth Sidel is an education for the nation. Sidel shatters all the old familiar negative myths and harsh stereotypes about single mothers, and gives us instead the unvarnished truth about their diverse lives, their courageous struggles to raise their children, and their genuine family values—values they share with millions of other Americans. Many of the larger patterns Sidel identifies—the constant search for a fair balance between work and family, the endless quest for decent jobs and fair pay and good schools and affordable health care—apply to all families as well. Hopefully, this excellent and eloquent volume will act as a wake-up call, and wiser federal, state, and local policies will enable many, many more of these hard-working mothers to find light at the end of the tunnel. This book offers a unique opportunity for every reader to walk in the shoes of single mothers and help find that light."—Senator Edward M. Kennedy

"Ruth Sidel's dramatic life histories of single mothers make a revealing point: These mothers, especially the poor ones among them, work far harder and act more responsibly than some two parent families. They have to, because their and their children's survival depends on it. Perhaps they are America's true Supermoms."—Herbert J. Gans, author of Making Sense of America

"This is a beautiful work of narrative, interwoven with mature reflections, on the courage and resilience of single mothers and the dangerous stereotypes and structural injustices by which their lives are made so difficult in our society. Ruth Sidel is a sensitive listener, and it is this gift which brings forth so much eloquence and piercing honesty from those who share their stories in this strong and stirring book."—Jonathan Kozol, author of The Shame of the Nation: The Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America

"Few readers will be untouched by the pain, loss and disrupted lives, but also the enormous strengths Sidel uncovers as these women struggle to rise above the debilitating stigma and mean-spirited penalties meted out to single mothers, especially those without means. Thoughtful, sympathetic and well-researched, Unsung Heroines is absolutely required reading for anyone working with single mothers and especially for the nation's leaders who shape public policy."—Mimi Abramovitz, author of Regulating the Lives of Women: Social Welfare Policy From Colonial Times to the Present

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780520238268
Publisher:
University of California Press
Publication date:
04/28/2006
Pages:
265
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.75(d)

Table of Contents

1Moving beyond stigma19
2Genuine family values39
3Loss60
4Resilience, strength, and perseverance80
5"Everybody knows my grandma" : extended families and other support networks107
6"I have to do something with my life" : derailed dreams135
7"I really, really believed he would stick around" : conflicting conceptions of commitment161
8An agenda for the twenty-first century : caring for all our families184

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