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The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap “Leave It to Beaver” was not a documentary, Stephanie Coontz points out; neither the. By Stephanie Coontz In , I published The Way We Never Were: American Families And The Nostalgia Trap, a search for the supposed. The Way We Never Were has ratings and reviews. Wealhtheow said: Coontz presents the historical facts of American family life and political and.

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It doesn’t make the most enjoyable read but it is important and well worth it. Born to a father living on veterans disability pension, Gramm attended a publicly-funded university on a grant from the War Orphans Act. Amazon Rapids Fun stories for kids on the go.

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She mentions the fact that the greatest change since the ‘s has been the empowerment of women to take charge of birth control when engaging in pre-marital sex and the opening of the workforce to middle class as well as working class women. Set up a giveaway. This is an interesting book even hever it’s quite old now, Gender roles have almost always been determined by economic systems, and throughout history couples have engaged in premarital sex, domestic violence has Coontz presents a much-needed argument on the futility of conservative nostalgia for “the good old days,” chock-full of statistics.

Through the painstaking process of setting up accepted myths and then exposing the ways they fail to sow the seeds of pragmatic action, she implores us to get comfortable with ambiguity and run qay events through multiple, self-correcting filters. Given that Coontz’s book is now more than two decades nefer, I was expecting that it would perhaps have little to offer someone mired in the concerns of a twenty-first century young adult.

Marriages in pioneer days lasted a shorter time than they do now. Ee models of the American family have been on view in this political season.

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The Way We Never Were: Using the family as a focal lens, the book generates a precise and intriguing image of American communities, economics, and politics in the early s. Jul 02, Sdluvingit rated it liked it. In short, The Way We Never Were is a condemning look at the values and family structures that American society has normalized, cpontz on a history that American families have never had.

Placing the American family in its historical, cultural, economic, and philosophic context Coontz co-ed.

I’d like to read this book on Kindle Don’t have a Kindle? For anyone who still thinks the Nelsons or the Huxtables were normal.

While I enjoyed most of the book very much, the last few chapters, 9, 10, and 11, contained less historical perspective, being more focused wwy the political and social causes of current issues and less on how these particular issues have been handled at earlier times in our history. Her analysis is both comprehensive and balanced.

Few history books do such a good job of showing what can be done now, not just politically but socially, to make life better for everyday people. Battered women were regarded as masochist’s who provoked their hubands into beating them. She also fails to address the central role television has had in this national debate, albeit at the crux of her argument is the fictional American family conservatives love to cite as their model.

The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap

Coontz presents the historical facts of American family life and political and economic movements in hopes of demonstrating that the families of the past were not so idyllic and the families of the present are not so dysfunctional as they are often portrayed.

Hesistant to identify her opponents, she doesn’t emphasize it. For example, she writes of one society in which parents supposedly were perfectly happy having little or no contact with their children whatsoever, leaving their upbringing completely to others. Pick a favorite presumption about American families during better times The Family and Outside Intervention. Turns wer it isn’t at all what we think.

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The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap – Stephanie Coontz – Google Books

Placing current family dilemmas in the context of far-reaching economic, political, and demographic changes, The Way We Never Were shows that people have not suddenly and inexplicably “gone bad” and points to ways that we can help families do better. We continue as a country to try to wers back” to families and values that never actually existed.

The edition is great, with a new introduction and epilogue. This book is a wonderful education. View all 10 comments. Absolutely everybody who is a member of a family, or thinks families are important should read this book. Account Options Sign in.

The book began in response to the urgent questions about the family crisis posed her by nonacademic nevwr. Amazon Renewed Refurbished products with a warranty. This is excellent in terms of giving her argument more substance than all her wau books combined, but it makes for a dry read.

Wsy prescription drug problem is not exactly a new wau either. Everyone should read this book because this is one of those times where the historical perspective actually shows you how you can make things better in the present: Customers who bought this item also bought.

Oh, we families had a jolly time in the ’50s, living and breathing, family values, whatever those are. Most interestingly, she uses data to demonstrate how changes in family structure often have more to do with overall social trends than gains by those pesky feminists and morally loose populations per se. The Way We Never Were examines two centuries of American family life and shatters a series of myths and half-truths that burden modern families.