Who's Watching?: Daily Practices of Surveillance among Contemporary Families

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Although family members sometime engage in monitoring as an extension of governmental surveillance, they also monitor each other, other families, and their own borders to preserve norms about what a family should be and what family members should do. Whether it is the seemingly benign surveillance of using baby monitors, the more obviously intrusive use of home drug tests on teenagers, or the way people in public feel free to judge and comment on the family composition of others, monitoring goes on all the time — and even (or maybe especially) when there seems to be no monitoring going on at all.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826516725
  • Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press
  • Publication date: 9/25/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Margaret K. Nelson is the Hepburn Professor of Sociology and Women's and Gender Studies at Middlebury College. She is the author of five books, includingThe Social Economy of Single Motherhood: Raising Children in Rural Americaand the forthcoming title, Parenting Out of Control: The Childrearing Style of the Professional Middle Class.

Anita Ilta Garey is Associate Professor of Human Development & Family Studies and Sociology at the University of Connecticut. Her book, Weaving Work and Motherhood, was awarded the 2000 William S. Goode Book Award Prize from the Family Section of the American Sociology Association, and she co-edited, with Karen V. Hansen, Families in the U.S.: Kinship and Domestic Politics.

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Table of Contents

Margaret K. Nelson and Anita Ilta Garey
Part I. They're Watching You Watch Each Other
Chapter 1. Nested Responsibility and the Monitoring of Children and Parents in Family Court
Anita Ilta Garey
Chapter 2. "Where Are You and What Are You Doing?": Familial Back-Up Work as a Collateral Consequence of House Arrest
William G. Staples
Chapter 3. Bring It on Home: Home Drug Testing and the Relocation of the War on Drugs
Dawn Moore and Kevin D. Haggerty
Part II. We're Watching You, We're Watching Each Other
Chapter 4. Interracial Surveillance and Biological Privilege: Adoptive Families in the Public Eye
Heather Jacobson
Chapter 5. Playground Panopticism: Ring-around-the-Children, a Pocketful of Women
Holly Blackford
Chapter 6. "I Saw Your Nanny": Gossip and Shame in the Surveillance of Child Care
Margaret K. Nelson
PART III. Who's In, Who's Out: Monitoring Family Boundaries
Chapter 7. The Social Impact of Amniocentesis
Rayna Rapp

Chapter 8. Turning Strangers into Kin: Half Siblings and Anonymous Donors
Rosanna Hertz

Chapter 9. The Powers of Parental Observation: Constructing Networks of Care
Karen V. Hansen

Chapter 10. "Show Me You Can Be a Father": Maternal Monitoring and Recruitment of Fathers for Involvement in Low-Income Families
Kevin Roy and Linda Burton
Part IV. Monitoring inside the Family

Chapter 11. Watching Babies: Describing the Use of Baby Monitors on Epinions.com
Margaret K. Nelson
Chapter 12. Policing Gender Boundaries: Parental Monitoring of Preschool Children's Gender Nonconformity
Emily W. Kane
Chapter 13. "I Trust Them but I Don't Trust Them": Issues and Dilemmas in Monitoring Teenagers
Demie Kurz
Chapter 14. The Electronic Tether: Communication and Parental Monitoring during the College Years
Barbara K. Hofer, Constance Souder, Elena K. Kennedy, Nancy Fullman, and Kathryn Hurd

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