Negotiating Family Responsibilities

Front Cover
Negotiating Family Responsibilities provides a major new insight into contemporary family life, particularly kin relationships outside the nuclear family. While many people believe that the real meaning of 'family' has shrunk to the nuclear family household, there is considerable evidence to suggest that relationships with the wider kin group remain an important part of most people's lives.
Based on the findings of a major study of kinship, and including lively verbatim accounts of conversations with family members concepts of responsibility and obligation within family life are examined and the authors expand theories on the nature of assistance within families and argue that it is negotiated over time rather than given automatically.

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Contents

1 Understanding family responsibilities
1
dependence and independence
29
3 Negotiating commitments over time
59
4 Making legitimate excuses
95
5 Reputations and moral identities in the negotiation of family responsibilities
127
6 Conclusion
160
Methodology and research design
179
Should relatives be the preferred source of help for someone in need of assistance? Survey findings
197
Who does what for whom?
205
References
219
Name index
222
Subject index
224
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