9780465090976

The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780465090976

  • ISBN10:

    0465090974

  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1993-10-05
  • Publisher: Basic Books

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Summary

The Way We Never Wereexamines two centuries of American family life and shatters a series of myths and half-truths that burden modern families. Placing current family dilemmas in the context of far-reaching economic, political, and demographic changes, Coontz sheds new light on such contemporary concerns as parenting, privacy, love, the division of labor along gender lines, the black family, feminism, and sexual practice.

Author Biography

Stephanie Coontz is a member of the faculty of Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA, where she is a historian and an expert on American culture.

Table of Contents

Preface vii
Introduction 1(7)
1 The Way We Wish We Were: Defining the Family Crisis
8(15)
2 "Leave It to Beaver" and "Ozzie and Harriet": American Families in the 1950s
23(19)
3 "My Mother Was a Saint": Individualism, Gender Myths, and the Problem of Love
42(26)
4 We Always Stood on Our Own Two Feet: Self-reliance and the American Family
68(25)
5 Strong Families, the Foundation of a Virtuous Society: Family Values and Civic Responsibility
93(29)
6 A Man's Home Is His Castle: The Family and Outside Intervention
122(27)
7 Bra-Burners and Family Bashers: Feminism, Working Women, Consumerism, and the Family
149(31)
8 "First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage, Then Comes Mary with a Baby Carriage": Marriage, Sex, and Reproduction
180(27)
9 Toxic Parents, Supermoms, and Absent Fathers: Putting Parenting in Perspective
207(25)
10 Pregnant Girls, Wilding Boys, Crack Babies, and the Underclass: The Myth of Black Family Collapse
232(23)
11 The Crisis Reconsidered
255(28)
Epilogue Inventing a New Tradition 283(6)
Notes 289(88)
Select Bibliography 377(4)
Index 381

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