What do we envision when we hear “American family?” How is the definition of ‘family’ changing and why? Whether nuclear, step, foster, extended, transnational, adoptive, or informal, American families are more diverse than ever. The structures of families are changing. Families, now more than ever, are influenced by other social and cultural shifts, such as the rise of single parent households, divorce, opting for cohabitation over marriage, and same-sex marriage. Each of these new definitions of family is rooted in broader economic and social changes that are underway in the U.S. and around the world. Sociologist Teresa Ciabattari leads a conversation that explores the complexity and history of modern American families, including how and why they have changed and what the implications are for the future. Participants will explore not only how these changes are influenced by the economy and society, but also find new ways to interpret changes in the American family that they have observed.
Funded project of Humanities Washington. Humanities Washington is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization in Washington state and a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.