Over a span of five years, [the authors] talked in-depth with 162 low-income single moms ... to learn how they think about marriage and family. [This book] offers an intimate look at what marriage and motherhood mean to these women and provides [an] extensive on-the-ground study ... of why they put children before marriage despite the daunting challenges they know lie ahead.. [This book] argues that until poor young women and men have greater access to jobs that lead to financial security - that is, until they can hope for a rewarding life outside of bearing and raising children - they will continue to have children far sooner than most Americans think they should, and in less than ideal circumstances.--
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Examines the shifting paradigm of unmarried fatherhood in inner cities in the United States, citing how economic and cultural changes have transformed the meaning of fatherhood among the urban poor.
This text examines the family through two lenses - the familiar private family in which we live most of our personal lives, and the public family in which we, as adults, deal with broader societal issues such as raising the next generation and the care of the elderly. Consequently the selected readings look both at intimate personal concerns, such as whether to marry, as well as societal concerns, such as governmental policies that affect families. The author introduces each chapter, providing helpful lead-ins to the readings that follow. The 32 readings in this edition are comprised of a well-balanced mix of highly accessible selections from the popular press as well as articles from scholarly journals. This reader serves as an excellent companion to other texts in the sociology of marriage and the family and as a useful source of information on its own. It is an excellent supplement to Cherlins text, Public and Private Families: An Introduction. Its 16 chapters, which address contemporary issues such as the history of the family, welfare and welfare reform, divorce and step-parenting are keyed to the 16 chapters in Cherlins text.
In a work that will significantly influence the political discussion with respect to race and class politics, one of the country's most influential sociologists focuses on the rising inequality in American society and the need for a progressive, multiracial political coalition to combat it. The culmination of decades of distinguished scholarship, The Bridge over the Racial Divide brilliantly demonstrates how political power is disproportionately concentrated among the most advantaged segments of society and how the monetary, trade, and tax policies of recent years have deepened this power imbalance. Developing his earlier views on race in contemporary society, William Julius Wilson gives a simple, straightforward, and crucially important diagnosis of the problem of rising social inequality in the United States and details a set of recommendations for dealing with it. Wilson argues that as long as middle- and working-class groups are fragmented along racial lines, they will fail to see how their combined efforts could change the political imbalance and thus promote policies that reflect their interests. He shows how a vision of American society that highlights racial differences rather than commonalities makes it difficult for Americans to see the need and appreciate the potential for mutual political support across racial lines. Multiracial political cooperation could be enhanced if we can persuade groups to focus more on the interests they hold in common, including overcoming stagnating and declining real incomes that relate to changes in the global economy, Wilson argues. He advocates a cross-race, class-based alliance of working-and middle-class Americans to pursue policies that will deal with the eroding strength of the nation's equalizing institutions, including public education, unions, and political structures that promote the interests of ordinary families. He also advocates a reconstructed "affirmative opportunity" program that benefits African Americans without antagonizing whites. Using theoretical arguments and case studies, Wilson examines how a broad-based political constituency can be created, sustained, and energized. Bold, provocative, and thoughtful, The Bridge over the Racial Divide is an essential resource in considering some of the most pressing issues facing the American public today. This book is a copublication with the Russell Sage Foundation.
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • President Joe Biden, the author of Promise Me, Dad, tells the story of his extraordinary life and career prior to his emergence as Barack Obama’s beloved, influential vice president. “I remain captivated by the possibilities of politics and public service. In fact, I believe that my chosen profession is a noble calling.”—Joe Biden Joe Biden has both witnessed and participated in a momentous epoch of American history. In Promises to Keep, Joe Biden reveals what these experiences taught him about himself, his colleagues, and the institutions of government. With his customary candor and wit, Biden movingly recounts growing up in a staunchly Catholic multigenerational household in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and Wilmington, Delaware; overcoming personal tragedy, life-threatening illness, and career setbacks; his relationships with presidents, with world leaders, and with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle; and his leadership of powerful Senate committees. Through these and other recollections, Biden shows us how the guiding principles he learned early in life—to work to make people’s lives better; to honor family and faith; to value persistence, candor, and honesty—are the foundation on which he has based his life’s work as husband, father, and public servant. Promises to Keep is an intimate series of reflections from a public servant who surmounted numerous challenges to become one of our most effective leaders and who refuses to be cynical about politics. It is also a stirring testament to the promise of the United States. Praise for Promises to Keep “A ripping good read . . . Biden is a master storyteller and has stories worth telling.”—The Christian Science Monitor “A compelling personal story.”—The New York Times “Moving . . . [Biden’s] response to tragedy and near death [is] both admirable and likable.”—Salon
An Instant #1 New York Times Bestseller! An Instant Indie Bestseller! *An Amazon Best Book of the Year * A B&N Best Book of the Year* A great gift for tiny go-getters and big dreamers, including for back to school! NBA champion and superstar LeBron James pens a slam-dunk picture book inspired by his foundation’s I PROMISE program that motivates children everywhere to always #StriveForGreatness. Just a kid from Akron, Ohio, who is dedicated to uplifting youth everywhere, LeBron James knows the key to a better future is to excel in school, do your best, and keep your family close. I Promise is a lively and inspiring picture book that reminds us that tomorrow’s success starts with the promises we make to ourselves and our community today. Featuring James’s upbeat, rhyming text and vibrant illustrations perfectly crafted for a diverse audience by #1 New York Times bestselling and Geisel Honor winning artist Nina Mata, this book has the power to inspire all children and families to be their best. Perfect for shared reading in and out of the classroom, I Promise is also a great gift for graduation, birthdays, and other occasions. Plus check out the audiobook, read by LeBron James's mother and I Promise School supporter Gloria James!
The inspiring story of a mother who took unimaginable tragedy and used her grief as a force to do good by transforming the lives of others. When Maria Kefalas’s daughter Calliope was diagnosed with a degenerative, uncurable genetic disease, the last thing Maria expected to discover in herself was a superpower. She and her husband, Pat, were head over heels in love with their youngest daughter, whose spirit, dancing eyes, and appetite for life captured the best of each of them. When they learned that Cal had MLD (metachromatic leukodystrophy), their world was shattered. But as she spent time listening to and learning from Cal, Maria developed the superpower of grief. It made her a fearless warrior for her daughter. And it gave her voice a bell-like clarity—poignant and funny all at once. This superpower of grief also revealed a miracle—not the conventional sort that fuels the prayers of friends and strangers but a realization that, in order to save themselves, Maria and Pat would need to find a way to save others. And so, with their two older children, they set out to raise money so that they, in their son PJ’s words, could “find a cure for Cal’s disease.” They had no way of knowing that a research team in Italy was closing in on an effective gene therapy for MLD. Though the therapy came too late to help Cal, this news would be the start of an unexpected journey that would introduce Maria and her family to world-famous scientists, brilliant doctors, biotech CEOs, a Hall of Fame NFL quarterback, and a wise nun, and it would also involve selling 50 thousand cupcakes. They would travel to the FDA, the NIH, and the halls of Congress in search of a cure that would never save their child. And their lives would become inextricably intertwined with the families of 13 children whose lives would be transformed by the biggest medical breakthrough in a generation. A memoir about heartbreak that is also about joy, Harnessing Grief is both unsparing and generous. Steeped in love, it is a story about possibility.
Welfare mothers are popularly viewed as passively dependent on their checks and averse to work. Reformers across the political spectrum advocate moving these women off the welfare rolls and into the labor force as the solution to their problems. Making Ends Meet offers dramatic evidence toward a different conclusion: In the present labor market, unskilled single mothers who hold jobs are frequently worse off than those on welfare, and neither welfare nor low-wage employment alone will support a family at subsistence levels. Kathryn Edin and Laura Lein interviewed nearly four hundred welfare and low-income single mothers from cities in Massachusetts, Texas, Illinois, and South Carolina over a six year period. They learned the reality of these mothers' struggles to provide for their families: where their money comes from, what they spend it on, how they cope with their children's needs, and what hardships they suffer. Edin and Lein's careful budgetary analyses reveal that even a full range of welfare benefits—AFDC payments, food stamps, Medicaid, and housing subsidies—typically meet only three-fifths of a family's needs, and that funds for adequate food, clothing and other necessities are often lacking. Leaving welfare for work offers little hope for improvement, and in many cases threatens even greater hardship. Jobs for unskilled and semi-skilled women provide meager salaries, irregular or uncertain hours, frequent layoffs, and no promise of advancement. Mothers who work not only assume extra child care, medical, and transportation expenses but are also deprived of many of the housing and educational subsidies available to those on welfare. Regardless of whether they are on welfare or employed, virtually all these single mothers need to supplement their income with menial, off-the-books work and intermittent contributions from family, live-in boyfriends, their children's fathers, and local charities. In doing so, they pay a heavy price. Welfare mothers must work covertly to avoid losing benefits, while working mothers are forced to sacrifice even more time with their children. Making Ends Meet demonstrates compellingly why the choice between welfare and work is more complex and risky than is commonly recognized by politicians, the media, or the public. Almost all the welfare-reliant women interviewed by Edin and Lein made repeated efforts to leave welfare for work, only to be forced to return when they lost their jobs, a child became ill, or they could not cover their bills with their wages. Mothers who managed more stable employment usually benefited from a variety of mitigating circumstances such as having a relative willing to watch their children for free, regular child support payments, or very low housing, medical, or commuting costs. With first hand accounts and detailed financial data, Making Ends Meet tells the real story of the challenges, hardships, and survival strategies of America's poorest families. If this country's efforts to improve the self-sufficiency of female-headed families is to succeed, reformers will need to move beyond the myths of welfare dependency and deal with the hard realities of an unrewarding American labor market, the lack of affordable health insurance and child care for single mothers who work, and the true cost of subsistence living. Making Ends Meet is a realistic look at a world that so many would change and so few understand.
An enchanting and poignant story about the unfailing power of love in a world turned upside down by war—from the bestselling author of Tides of Honour. Summer 1755, Acadia Young, beautiful Amélie Belliveau lives with her family among the Acadians of Grande Pré, Nova Scotia, content with her life on their idyllic farm. Along with their friends, the neighbouring Mi’kmaq, the community believes they can remain on neutral political ground despite the rising tides of war. But peace can be fragile, and sometimes faith is not enough. When the Acadians refuse to pledge allegiance to the British in their war against the French, the army invades Grande Pré, claims the land, and rips the people from their homes. Amélie’s entire family, alongside the other Acadians, is exiled to ports unknown aboard dilapidated ships. Fortunately, Amélie has made a powerful ally. Having survived his own harrowing experience at the hands of the English, Corporal Connor MacDonnell is a reluctant participant in the British plan to expel the Acadians from their homeland. His sympathy for Amélie gradually evolves into a profound love, and he resolves to help her and her family in any way he can—even if it means treason. As the last warmth of summer fades, more ships arrive to ferry the Acadians away, and Connor is forced to make a decision that will alter the future forever. Heart-wrenching and captivating, Promises to Keep is a gloriously romantic tale of a young couple forced to risk everything amidst the uncertainties of war.
What would my mother say? How would she want me to handle this situation? How can I make this tough decision and stay true to myself? What would my mother say? Sam Haskell still asks himself these questions every day. When Haskell was young, his devoted mother, Mary, instilled in her son the values of character, faith, and honor by setting an example and asking him to promise to live his life according to her lessons. He did, and those promises have served Haskell consistently from his Mississippi boyhood to his long career at the venerable William Morris Agency in Beverly Hills. In this inspiring memoir full of touching stories and amusing anecdotes, Haskell reveals how he kept his pledge to his mother to live a decent life–even in the shark-infested waters of Hollywood, where he handled the hottest stars and packaged the highest-rated shows–by refusing to become the cliché of an amoral agent. Here is Haskell as a child in Amory, Mississippi (pop. 7,000), discovering the power of hope as he waits for an unlikely visit from the “Cheer Man” (a representative of the detergent company who gave ten dollars to anyone using the brand), learning humility after pursuing an eighth-grade “Good Citizenship” award he cockily assumed he’d win, confronting the complications of human character when a near-fatal car crash exposed his judgmental father’s true nature. Years later, in Hollywood, Haskell would rely on his mother’s teachings–honesty, self-reliance, and belief in God–as he swiftly rose from the William Morris mailroom to eventually become the company’s Worldwide Head of Television. His capacity for friendship and his insistence on living his version of the Golden Rule (being “thoughtfully political”) allowed him to handle various client crises and the tense negotiations that nearly scuttled the last years of Everybody Loves Raymond and the entire existence of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Haskell has achieved success through self-respect, and from his story we learn how we, too, can maintain our dignity when faced with life’s challenges. This stirring memoir is a testament to mothers everywhere who instill in their sons the lasting values they need to become good men and devoted fathers.