Offering an integrated, culturally sensitive focus, Understanding Latino Families presents a dynamic new approach to the study of Latino families. This new approach centers on the strengths of Latino/Hispanic groups, the structural processes that impede their progress, and the cultural and familial processes that enhance their intergenerational adaptation and resiliency. A leading group of scholars clearly presents social and demographic profiles of Latino groups in the United States, empirical and conceptual reviews of Latino family approaches, and practice and policy implications from studies of Latino social programs. Included for discussion are such salient topics as the economic well-being of Latino families, prospects for Latino children and adolescents, the adjustment of Central American refugee families, and Latino child and family health concerns. Researchers, scholars, and students in the fields of ethnic studies, family studies, sociology, social work, and psychology will find Understanding Latino Families an invaluable resource. “Understanding Latino Families is a timely edition of the Understanding Families series distributed by Sage Publications. In a political climate of economic discord and social change, this book highlights the ways many Latino families struggle to succeed in the face of factors related to immigration, labor for transformations, cultural incongruence with dominant society, cross-force transformations, cultural incongruence with the dominant society, cross-generational acculturation patterns, and racism.… Adding veracity to the social policy debate, Understanding Latino Families presents social and demographic profiles of Latino groups in the United States, empirical and conceptual reviews of Latino family approaches, and practice and policy implications from studies of Latino social problems.” --Cultural Diversity and Mental Health “Understanding Latino Families presents an excellent new approach to the study of Latino family structures: one which considers ethnic group strengths, family actions, and the processes that enhance resiliency. This makes for quite a scholarly, probing study.” --The Midwest Book Review “College-level students of social service will appreciate having a new approach that considers the collective group strengths of Hispanics and the processes that enhance their adaptation process. Scholars present reviews of Latino family groups in this country and discuss their social and economic patters.” --The Bookwatch “For researchers and students in the fields of ethnic studies, family studies, sociology, and social work, this book offers a culturally sensitive approach to the study of Latino families. Featured are social and demographic profiles of Latino groups, empirical reviews of Latino families, approaches, and practice and policy implications from studies of Latino social programs. Other topics include the prospects for Latino children and adolescents, child and family health concerns, and the adjustment of Central American refugee families.” --Journal of Social Work Education “Understanding Latino Families is an important contribution and a badly needed addition to the field of family studies. This book provides a wealth of information about the contemporary status of Latino families. It will immediately become a basic source for introducing readers to this topic and will inform both specialists and students of various levels of sophistication. This book is especially strong in giving the reader an appreciation for the great diversity that exists in the racial and ethnic composition that characterizes the membership of Latino families. Of the existing work on this topic, this edited book is the best collection … in the social sciences. I am convinced that academics and professionals in the fields of child development, sociology, and social work can benefit greatly by reading this book. This collection will also be a valuable tool for graduate students in all these fields. Selected chapters that are less theoretically based might also be beneficial for undergraduates who are taking university courses on ethnic diversity.” --Gary W. Peterson, Arizona State University, Tempe
Chapter 1: The Study of Latino Families: A Point of Departure
The Study of Latino Families: A Point of Departure
This chapter presents a theoretical overview of important themes in the Latino family literature and a discussion of how recent social and economic trends may be affecting the Latino family. Many powerful ideas framing research on Latino families are a synthesis of old and new concepts. From various academic sources and traditions, an orienting conceptual framework is emerging, one that reflects the most important social issues and intellectual movements of the past few decades (Vega, 1990).
The theoretical substrate of current Latino family research is informed by diverse anthropological, sociological, and social psychological studies that focus on immigrant and intergenerational patterns of family structure, social support, gender-role behaviors, ...