Sociocultural Models

As noted at the beginning of this chapter, behavioral science increasingly recognizes the importance of contextual factors as well as biological or genetic factors that influence male-female behavior generally, and fathers' and mothers' behavior specifically. A number of researchers have developed models that take into account complex processes that influence parent-child relations. For example, Rohner's (1986) sociocultural systems model connects the behavioral, psychological, and social development of children to parents' behavior and to sociocultural processes. That is, parental behavior and children's development are linked in reciprocal fashion to the natural environment and to a society's maintenance systems, which include the ways people make a living, ensure social control, and ensure the procreation and successful rearing of children. Maintenance systems include political structure, defense systems, family structure, household composition, social class system, and economic organizations.

Rohner's model builds conceptually on earlier models designed by Kardiner (1945), and by J. Whiting and Child (1953), which link primary institutions and maintenance systems to child rearing and child and adult personality. Other models include Bronfenbrenner's bio-ecological approach (Bronfenbrenner & Ceci, 1994) and Super and Harkness's (1986) developmental niche model that links parent-child relations to a society's customs and values, fathers' and mothers' psychology, and the social and physical setting. For example, Moreno (in press) found that Latino mothers' involvement with their children's education varies according to their education level and socio-economic status, language proficiency, availability of extended family supports, goals for their children's futures, personal and psychological variables, and level of acculturation. A range of contextual indicators, as discussed in the next section, also predicts paternal involvement.

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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