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Child Rearing Styles Essay Contest

dren who are securely attached to their parents are provided a solid foundation for healthy development, including the establishment of strong peer relationships and the ability to empathize with others (Bowlby, 1978; Chen et al., 2012; Holmes, 2006; Main and Cassidy, 1988; Murphy and Laible, 2013). Conversely, young children who do not become securely attached with a primary caregiver (e.g., as a result of maltreatment or separation) may develop insecure behaviors in childhood and potentially suffer other adverse outcomes over the life course, such as mental health disorders and disruption in other social and emotional domains (Ainsworth and Bell, 1970; Bowlby, 2008; Schore, 2005).

More recently, developmental psychologists and economists have described parents as investing resources in their children in anticipation of promoting the children’s social, economic, and psychological well-being. Kalil and DeLeire (2004) characterize this promotion of children’s healthy development as taking two forms: (1) material, monetary, social, and psychological resources and (2) provision of support, guidance, warmth, and love. Bradley and Corwyn (2004) characterize the goals of these investments as helping children successfully regulate biological, cognitive, and social-emotional functioning.

Parents possess different levels and quality of access to knowledge that can guide the formation of their parenting attitudes and practices. As discussed in greater detail in Chapter 2, the parenting practices in which parents engage are influenced and informed by their knowledge, including facts and other information relevant to parenting, as well as skills gained through experience or education. Parenting practices also are influenced by attitudes, which in this context refer to parents’ viewpoints, perspectives, reactions, or settled ways of thinking with respect to the roles and importance of parents and parenting in children’s development, as well as parents’ responsibilities. Attitudes may be part of a set of beliefs shared within a cultural group and founded in common experiences, and they often direct the transformation of knowledge into practice.

Parenting knowledge, attitudes, and practices are shaped, in part, by parents’ own experiences (including those from their own childhood) and circumstances; expectations and practices learned from others, such as family, friends, and other social networks; and beliefs transferred through cultural and social systems. Parenting also is shaped by the availability of supports within the larger community and provided by institutions, as well as by policies that affect the availability of supportive services.

Along with the multiple sources of parenting knowledge, attitudes, and practices and their diversity among parents, it is important to acknowledge the diverse influences on the lives of children. While parents are central to children’ development, other influences, such as relatives, close family friends, teachers, community members, peers, and social institutions, also

The first wave of literature was conducted from traditional or unidirectional perspectives, and this perspective was well represented in the first major handbook, Goslin 1969. The most comprehensive treatment of socialization covering recent perspectives on a wide range of topics is Grusec and Hastings 2007. Socialization is also well covered from several perspectives in child development handbooks such as Damon and Lerner 2006. A particular focus on emerging theories of parenting and children’s outcomes can be found in Grusec and Kuczynski 1997 and in Bornstein 2002, a five-volume handbook. New approaches that consider socialization as a dynamic bidirectional process are covered in Kuczynski 2003. Hoghughi and Long 2004 provides practical information for professionals working with parenting issues. Beginning students will find a start on socialization in the context of child rearing in a recent authoritative textbook, Holden 2010.

  • Bornstein, Marc H., ed. Handbook of Parenting. Vol. 1, Children and Parenting. 2d ed. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum, 2002.

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    This five-volume authoritative handbook covers extensive literature about parenting, including parenting children at different developmental stages and from common and special groups, the biology and socioecology of parenting, parenting in different circumstances, individual and contextual factors affecting parenting, the impact of parenting on children, developments and challenges on parenting research, and practical issues.

  • Damon, William, and Richard M. Lerner, eds. Handbook of Child Psychology. 6th ed. 4 vols. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2006.

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    Important updates in socialization and parenting research can be found in different editions of this handbook. In this edition, theoretical approaches considering the parental role in child development are reviewed (Vol. 1), as well as research about the contextual influences implied (Vols. 2 and 3). Vol. 4 approaches applied development and addresses the ways in which research can inform those working with children, their families, and caretakers.

  • Goslin, David A., ed. Handbook of Socialization Theory and Research. Chicago: Rand McNally, 1969.

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    This is a classic resource for researchers interested in thinking at the cusp of old and modern approaches to socialization. Twenty-nine chapters describe developmental sociological, cultural biological, cognitive developmental, behavioral, and psychoanalytic theory and research just as problems in the field were emerging.

  • Grusec, Joan E., and Paul D. Hastings. Handbook of Socialization: Theory and Research. New York: Guilford, 2007.

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    The most recent comprehensive handbook, bringing together leading authorities to synthesize current knowledge on socialization from earliest childhood through adolescence, adulthood, and into old age. Twenty-six chapters showcase cutting-edge work in genetics and biology, cultural psychology, and research on parenting strategies, bidirectionality, and emotion. The volume presents innovative theories and methods and identifies directions for future research. It is intended for advanced students, researchers, and professionals.

  • Grusec, Joan E., and Leon Kuczynski, eds. 1997. Parenting and Children’s Internalization of Values: A Handbook of Contemporary Theory. New York: Wiley.

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    This is an important resource for modern theories on processes of socialization and internalization. The major parts concern history, developmental context, the nature of parental strategies and child outcomes, parenting cognitions, and social and biological contexts. Throughout the book, the contributing authors explain the approach to socialization taken in their work, and they review recent developments in theory and research that have influenced their conclusions.

  • Hoghughi, Masud, and Nicholas Long, eds. Handbook of Parenting: Theory and Research for Practice. London and Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2004.

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    This handbook is primarily concerned with considering theory and research evidence as a basis for practice rather than research, including topics on parenting research, such as parental influences on child development and adjustment; the impact of parenting on children’s health, development, and behavior; determinants of parenting; and support for parents.

  • Holden, George W. Parenting: A Dynamic Perspective. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2010.

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    This textbook, intended for senior students, provides a parent-centered overview of the complexity of parenting with a focus on socialization. It follows a format common to other undergraduate texts, covering theory, parenting at different stages, and various contemporary issues, including diverse contexts and maltreatment. However, the work’s authoritative research-based approach makes it stand out from other introductory texts.

  • Kuczynski, Leon. Handbook of Dynamics in Parent-Child Relations. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE, 2003.

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    This is an important resource for research and theory on dynamic processes in parent–child interactions and relationships that may underlie outcome research. It provides overarching theoretical and methodological frameworks for studying bidirectional and relational processes in parent–child relations. Major sections of the book include conceptual frameworks; perspectives on children’s agency; perspectives on parental agency; ecological, cultural, and developmental contexts; and methodology.

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