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Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life MP3 CD – Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged

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Product details

  • MP3 CD
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc; 2nd Unabridged edition (14 Nov. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1452654719
  • ISBN-13: 978-1452654713
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.5 x 18.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,106,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

From the Inside Flap

"So where does something like practical intelligence come from?...Perhaps the best explanation we have of this process comes from the sociologist Annette Lareau, who...conducted a fascinating study of a group of third graders. You might expect that if you spent such an extended period in twelve different households, what you would gather is twelve different ideas about how to raise children...What Lareau found, however, is something much different." --Malcolm Gladwell, Outliers: The Story of Success
"Less than one in five Americans think 'race, gender, religion or social class are very important for getting ahead in life, ' Annette Lareau tells us in her carefully researched and clearly written new book. But as she brilliantly shows, everything from looking authority figures in the eye when you shake their hands to spending long periods in a shared space and squabbling with siblings is related to social class. This is one of the most penetrating works I have read on a topic that only grows in importance as the class gap in America widens."--Arlie Russell Hochschild, author of The Time Bind and The Commercialization of Intimate Life
"This is a great book, not only because of its powerful portrayal of class inequalities in the United States and its insightful analysis of the processes through which inequality is reproduced, but also because of its frank engagement with methodological and analytic dilemmas usually glossed over in academic texts. Hardly any other studies have the rich, intensive ethnographic focus on family of Unequal Childhoods." --Diane Reay, American Journal of Sociology
"Lareau does sociology and lay readers alike an important service in her engaging book, Unequal Childhoods, by showing us exactly what kinds of knowledge, upbringing, skills, and bureaucratic savvy are involved in this idea, and how powerfully inequality in this realm perpetuates economic inequality. Through textured and intimate observation, Lareau takes us into separate worlds of pampered but overextended, middle-class families and materially stressed, but relatively relaxed, working-class and poor families to show how inequality is passed on across generations." --Katherine Newman, Contexts
"Sociology at its best. In this major study, Lareau provides the tools to make sense of the frenzied middle-class obsession with their offspring's extracurricular activities; the similarities between black and white professionals; and the paths on which poor and working class kids are put by their circumstances. This book will help generations of students understand that organized soccer and pick-up basketball have everything to do with the inequality of life chances."--Michele Lamont, author of The Dignity of Working Men: Morality and the Boundaries of Race, Class, and Immigration
"Drawing upon remarkably detailed case studies of parents and children going about their daily lives, Lareau argues that middle-class and working-class families operate with different logics of childrearing, which both reflect and contribute to the transmission of inequality. An important and provocative book."--Barrie Thorne, author of Gender Play: Girls and Boys in School
"With rich storytelling and insightful detail, Lareau takes us inside the family lives of poor, middle-class, and affluent Americans and reminds us that class matters. Unequal Childhoods thoughtfully demonstrates that class differences in cultural resources, played out in the daily routines of parenting, can have a powerful impact on children's chances for climbing the class ladder and achieving the American dream. This provocative and often disturbing book will shape debates on the U.S. class system for decades to come."--Sharon Hays, author of Flat Broke with Children
"Drawing on intimate knowledge of kids and families studied at school and at home, Lareau examines the social changes that have turned childhood into an extended production process for many middle-class American families. Her depiction of this new world of childhood--and her comparison of the middle-class ideal of systematic cultivation to the more naturalistic approach to child development to which many working-class parents still adhere--maps a critically important dimension of American family life and raises challenging questions for parents and policy makers."--Paul DiMaggio, Professor of Sociology, Princeton University
"Annette Lareau has written another classic. Her deep insights about the social stratification of family life and childrearing have profound implications for understanding inequality -- and for understanding the daily struggles of everyone attempting to raise children in America. Lareau's findings have great force because they are thoroughly grounded in compelling ethnographic evidence."--Adam Gamoran, Professor of Sociology and Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison
"With the poignant details of daily life assembled in a rigorous comparative design, Annette Lareau has produced a highly ambitious ethnographic study that reveals how social class makes a difference in children's lives. Unequal Childhoods will be read alongside Sewell and Hauser, Melvin Kohn, and Bourdieu. It is an important step forward in the study of social stratification and family life, and a valuable exemplar for comparative ethnographic work."--Mitchell Duneier, author of Sidewalk and Slim's Table --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

About the Author

Annette Lareau is the Stanley I. Sheerr Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. She is faculty member in the Department of Sociology with a secondary appointment in the Graduate School of Education. Lareau is the author of Home Advantage: Social Class and Parental Intervention in Elementary Education (1989; second edition, 2000), and coeditor of Social Class: How Does it Work? (2009); and Education Research on Trial: Policy Reform and the Call for Scientific Rigor (2009); and Journeys through Ethnography: Realistic Accounts of Fieldwork(1996). --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book should be required reading for all politicians, educators, parents and voters.

I stumbled across 'Unequal Childhoods', while reading 'Outliers', by Malcolm Gladwell: he uses examples from Lareau to support the central argument of his book (that unusually successful people have almost always benefited from unusually fortunate opportunities - quite often including an unusually high level of parental investment. While it may sound obvious, it goes against everything I was taught to believe as a child: that succeeding is largely due to one's own effort).

Lareau's book is actually very different than Gladwell's. It introduces us to children from different economic backgrounds and their families, following them for over a decade while bringing every individual to life. We're given an engaging insight into the daily routine of our protagonists; though Lareau makes sharp comparisons of parenting styles between socioeconomic classes, these are incorporated naturally into the narrative.

On one level this is a very high quality piece of research - but it never feels dry or lifeless. To the contrary, it's a compelling read; avoiding an academic writing style in favour of a direct, simple, first person narrative.

For me the most relevant part of the book came towards the end when Lareau interviewed the now university-aged participants: perhaps unsurprisingly, the children from the highest socioeconomic bracket (the "concerted cultivation" group) were on track to graduate from university with a wide range of opportunities. Two of the children from the highest income brackets will also be graduating with very little debt: the frankly astonishing investment of parental time/money into extracurricular sports paid off in athletic scholarships.
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Format: Paperback
An eye-opening study into why and how some children learn to grow up successful in life while some others unfortunately do not. The findings of this social study can help parents of all types improve the positive exposure and upbringing of their children. It is also particularly helpful to teachers who may want to know why some children do better in school than others. Such teachers can work with school children and their parents to make small but significant improvements to the childrens' learning abilities.

For example, after the school holidays, children from middle class homes are more likely to return to school with improved reading skills than children from poorer homes - why is this and what can be done to help the poorer children keep up?

Another example: what role does structured play take in helping children to grow into assertive adults? What about unstructured play? Is one any better than the other?

After reading this book I bought copies for my brothers and their wives!
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Format: Kindle Edition
A fantastic insight to the relationship between the opportunities afforded to children and class. I would highly recommend it to anyone interested in childhood, sociology or any ethnographic researchers
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very insightful and surprisingly relevant considering the research is now twenty years old. A must read for all parents and expectant parents.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Very interesting!
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