Children in Changing Families: Life After Parental Separation
October 2001, ©2001, Wiley-Blackwell
Series Editor's Preface.
Glossary of Studies Frequently Referred to in the Book.
1. The Context of Family Transitions.
2. Frameworks for Understanding Family Transitions.
3. Family Transitions and Outcomes for Children.
4. Children's Perceptions of Families and Family Change.
5. Families that Separate.
6. Stepfamilies and Multiple Transitions.
7. Fathers in Families.
8. Explaining Outcomes for Children and Young People.
9. Overview and Future Direction.
Bryan Rodgers is a Senior Fellow in the Centre for Mental
Health Research at the Australian National University. He has
published research from the three large British birth cohort
studies of children born in 1946, 1958 and 1970.
In 1998 Jan Pryor and Bryan Rodgers authored a report for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation that reviewed UK research on outcomes for children whose parents separated or divorced.
- Covers research across North America, the UK, Australia and New Zealand.
- Examines different types of changes in families.
- Pays attention to children's own perceptions of family change.
- Provides research-based evidence to inform the debate over the role of fathers in children's lives.
Children in Changing Families: Life After Parental
Separation is a remarkable achievement. Spanning studies
conducted in the United States, England, Australia, and New
Zealand, this book provides a comprehensive and integrated overview
of research on parental divorce, parental remarriage, and
children's lives. Because this book is both authoritative and
clearly written, it will be valuable not only to family scholars,
but also to students, counselors, educators, legal professionals,
and policy makers. Although our understanding of these phenomena
continues to grow, Jan Pryor and Bryan Rodgers have written the
best book yet about the linkages between family structure, family
process, and children's well-being. Paul Amato, Pennsylvania
It has long been clear that parental divorce and other major
family change upsets children, but the severity of such effects and
the possibility of longer term consequences has been clouded by
evidence that has often seemed contradictory and has been open to
misinterpretation. At last we have a clear, authoritative, critical
but even handed appraisal of the field. Jan Pryor and Bryan
Rodgers' landmark account of the evidence will become the standard
reference for practitioners, policy makers, researchers and,
indeed, parents. Their book charts the impact of family change on
the emotional, behavioural and educational development of children
and young people against the relevant demographic and legal
backgrounds. The authors draw on research from the UK, Australia,
New Zealand and North America and bring it together in a remarkably
comprehensive and readable account. Martin Richards, University
"Pryor and Rodgers cover a broad overview of international
demographic trends and a wide range of empirical research on the
impact of changing family structures on children.
Although not a "law book", it is very accessible; the empirical
findings, where presented as tables, are clear and intelligible and
where necessary are supported by explanatory text. They outline
some of the major theoretical and conceptual frameworks currently
used to discuss family change. These are applied later when the
authors discuss the research evidence. In the final chapter the
authors draw their conclusions for both policy and practice,
highlighting where, in their opinion, further research is needed.
The book keeps its well-organised structure of nine broadly headed
chapters, each of which is further subdivided by clear
Family lawyers eaxmining law in context, rather than in a social
vacuum, should find this book thought-provoking. Perhaps a
dissemination of such information between different professionals
will even help to develop a better approach to dealing with
children in changing families." Joanne Beswick, Research
Associate, Staffordshire University. Family Law, December 2001,
"This major contribution to the literature on the impact of
separation and divorce on children is highly recommended". D.A.
Chekki, University of Winnipeg, Choice, April 2002
"The book is an essential text for all professionals whose work
brings them into contact with families where parents are
anticipating, going through or managing the consequences of
separation and divorce. Building on their 1998 review of UK
research, Jan Pryor and Bryan Rodgers bring together additional
research from North America, Australia and New Zealand to provide
the reader with a comprehensive overview of research findings that
account for why some children survive family reconstitution and
breakdown better than others." Christopher Vincent, Tavistock
Marital Studies Institute (London), Child & Adolescent Mental
Health, November 2002
"I see this volume as making a sound contribution to the current literature on children and divorce. In fact, it would be good required reading in a graduate course on changing families or family diversity, in part because of its inclusiveness in topics covered, and especially because of the strong emphasis on studies beyond the U.S. borders." Kay Pasley, University of North Carolina - Greensboro, Journal of Marriage and Family, February 2003