Women, Family, and Child Care in India: A World in Transition

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This book presents an in-depth study of twenty-four Hindu families, of different caste and class groups, who live in a newly urbanized part of India. Beginning with a two-year study of family organization and child-rearing practices in the mid-1960s, the author follows the lives of 132 children and their extended families over nearly three decades. The book's main focus is women—the socialization of girls and the significance of women's roles through the life cycle in a society where the patrifocal extended family is predominant. The author examines the effects of caste and class on women's lives, and the effects of recent schooling and delayed marriage. Longitudinal research makes it possible to examine the impact of recent urbanization and modernization on groups of contemporary Indian women. The voices and changing perspectives of these women are captured in a series of intergenerational interviews that imply further change for Indian systems of family and gender. Students and researchers in the fields of psychology, anthropology, cultural studies, and women's studies will find this book to be as intriguing as it is essential.

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Editorial Reviews

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"Very readable and attractively packaged, it would probably be an excellent text in a psychology course with a cross-cultural dimension - on child development, family life, cultural psychology, or women. The intent is to give the reader the feel of the culture and the people described. In this, Seymour eminently succeeds." APA Review of Books
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521591270
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2008
  • Pages: 344
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface; 1. Introduction; 2. Field methods and longitudinal research in Bhubaneswar; 3. The patrifocal family: growing up female in the Old Town; 4. Variations and transpositions: being a wife, mother, and daughter in the New Capital; 5. Caste, class and gender: to be poor and female; 6. Going out to school: women's changing aspirations; 7. Change and continuity in women's lives: a three-generational perspective; 8. Systems of family and gender in transition.

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