Relevant, focused and accessible this book will provide students with an indispensible guide to the central concepts of family studies.

Problem Families

Problem families


‘Problem families’ is one of a range of terms used for those families said to be on the margins of mainstream society in terms of their behaviour and values.


Versions of the idea of ‘problem families’ have reoccurred throughout the history of industrial society (Welshman, 2007). As well as ‘problem families’, other terms that have been used include dysfunctional families, a cycle of deprivation, the underclass, anti-social families and socially excluded families. Drawing on theories about appropriate parenting and family lives, problem families are judged to be, variously, structurally deficient or internally chaotic, socially excluded or withdrawn from the dominant social and moral order, causing problems for wider society through parental inability to control children and transmitting a subculture of poverty and inadequacy ...

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