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Fathers and sons: gender socialization and intergenerational transmission revisited
Department of Sociology and Human Geography , University of Oslo , Blindern, Oslo, Norway.
2009 (English)In: Nordic Journal for Masculinity Studies (NORMA), ISSN 1890-2138, Vol. 4, no 1, 83-102 p.Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

This article, which employs a dyadic father-son approach, addresses the methodological and theoretical challenges involved in studying gender socialization and intergenerational transmission. The article is part of a longitudinal follow-up study of the Work-Sharing Couples Project, a small, experimental action research project for gender equality in the family in Norway during the first part of the 1970s; the project was designed to promote gender equality and a better work/life balance in families and was based on both spouses working part-time and sharing breadwinning, childcare and housework. The follow-up study was conducted by interviewing the original couples in 2005–2006. A sample of the sons of the work- sharing couples has also been interviewed as part of an ongoing follow-up study of intergenerational transmission. The background of the article consists of the findings so far relating to the fathers in the study: these findings provide little or no support for a model of father/son transmission; the work-sharing men did not refer to their own fathers as “role models”. Further, the father-son research design poses certain methodological, theoretical and ethical challenges which should be considered and weighed up against the possible analytical gains of this approach. Against the background of these concerns, a single father-son case is explored based on a couple interview with the parents and individual interviews with both the parents and the son. Based on analyzing this case, methodological and theoretical implications for the study of intergenerational transmission, boys’ socialization and the origin of masculinity/(ies) are discussed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis Group, 2009. Vol. 4, no 1, 83-102 p.
Keyword [en]
gender socialization, intergenerational transmission, father-son, masculinity, gender equality
National Category
Gender Studies
Research subject
Gender Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-37926OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-37926DiVA: diva2:757794
Available from: 2014-10-23 Created: 2014-10-23 Last updated: 2017-10-18Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Modern men: A Norwegian 30-year longitudinal study of intergenerational transmission and social change
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Modern men: A Norwegian 30-year longitudinal study of intergenerational transmission and social change
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The dissertation addresses men and change, intergenerational transmission, historical change and agency, employing as a case a longitudinal follow-up study over two generations of men, where the fathers participated in an experimental research project, the Work-Sharing Couples Project, which aimed to promote egalitarian work–family adaptations in Norway in the early 1970s. The original project was based on both spouses working part-time and shift parenting. The summary presents a multidimensional analysis of the work–family adaptations of the two generations of men: the untraditional adaptation of fathers in the 1970s; and the neo-traditional adaptations of sons in the 2000s. Their different work–family adaptations are discussed as situated agency, taking into account different aspects of time and space, personal biography, discursive and material structures of opportunity, and intergenerational dynamics at the family level as well as at social level.

The five articles present the empirical material: Bjørnholt (2009a) presents the impact on the couple relation and the family of the the parents’ work–sharing arrangement, concluding that the work-sharing arrangement was perceived by the participants to have been beneficial for their couple relationship as well as for the family as a whole. Bjørnholt (2011) explores the motivations of the work-sharing men to act as agents of change towards gender equality, concluding that personal biography, an authoritative way of being and new masculinity ideals, notably a partner- oriented masculinity, were important. Bjørnholt (2010b) analyses the consequences of the work-sharing arrangement on the work-sharing men’s careers, concluding that there were few negative career effects. They were rather successful, and their house-father experiences tended to be valued by employers as management skills. Bjørnholt (2009b) concludes that a father–son design is insufficient in explaining intergenerational transmission and Bjørnholt (2010c) finds that the untraditional work–family arrangement had not been passed on to sons.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro university, 2014. 137 p.
Series
Örebro Studies in Gender Research, 3
Keyword
fathering, intergenerational transmission, longitudinal qualitative research, masculinities, men, part-time, social change, work–family
National Category
Gender Studies
Research subject
Gender Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-34980 (URN)978-91-7529-027-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-10-09, Prismahuset, Hörsal 2, Örebro universitet, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2014-05-07 Created: 2014-05-07 Last updated: 2017-10-17Bibliographically approved

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