Synopses & Reviews
The period between World War I and World War II was an important time in the history of gender relations, and of American fatherhood. Revealing the surprising extent to which some of yesterday's fathers were involved with their children, The Modernization of Fatherhood
recounts how fatherhood was reshaped during the Machine Age into the configuration we know today.
LaRossa explains that during the interwar period the image of the father as economic provider, pal, and male role model, all in one, became institutionalized. Using personal letters and popular magazine and newspaper sources, he explores how the social and economic conditions of the Roaring Twenties and the Great Depressionand#8212;a period of technical innovation as well as economic hardshipand#8212;fused these expectations into a cultural ideal. With chapters on the U.S. Children's Bureau, the fathercraft movement, the magazine industry and the development of Parent's Magazine, and the creation of Father's Day, this book is a major addition to the growing literature on masculinity and fatherhood.
'The Modernization of Fatherhood' is an enlightening documentation of shifts in the social construction of fatherhood, both as a cultural institution and as an individual reality.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -277) and index.
About the Author
Ralph LaRossa is professor of sociology at Georgia State University and the author of several books, including The Modernization of Fatherhood: A Social and Political History.
Table of Contents
1: The Modernization of Fatherhood
2: The Historical Roots of Standard North American Fatherhood
3: Fatherhood and the Baby Doctors
4: Men and Infants
6: Fatherhood and the Popular Press
7: "Dear Mr. Patri"
8: "Honor Thy Father"