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Families, Siblings and Identities
Families, siblings and identities

One of the tensions that characterizes contemporary experience is that arising from the wish to be unique, special, autonomous and ‘free’ (freedom from dependence is seen as particularly desirable for many in westernized cultures these days) alongside an equally powerful wish to be seen as the same as, be part of a collective, recognized, understood and cared for by others: a typically human tendency to pull in opposite directions at the same time. Of all the contexts in which identities are shaped, it is in families and family-like groups that these tensions often work most effectively to pattern the frameworks through which we come to make sense of ourselves and the world in which we live. It is ...

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