Regardless of social class most parents wish for their children to be happy, healthy, and successful; however, parents disagree on the best way to raise their children to be all of those things, which is when social class determines the parents’ child rearing method. Whether a child comes from a working class or middle class family affects the child’s development and socialization; and consequently the child’s future.
In most if not all cases, the class you are born into will determine how you will be raised, and who you will grow up to become. Whether you can speak up for yourself, if you are humble with what you have or you have a more hectic schedule or not, it all plays into what class you are from. No two childhoods are equal and Annette Lareau in her book, Unequal Childhoods explains why this is the case. I will be examining chapters four, five, and seven. These chapters examine poor and working children and teenagers and how their childhoods differ and relate to each other based on the class they were born in whether that be lower class to the poor. What can be learned from examining these three kids, Harold McAllister, Katie Brindle, and Tyrec Taylor is the advantages and disadvantages of having a childhood in the class of the poor or working class.
Childhood itself is a slightly ambiguous term, and is not a fixed definite period of life. The book “AS level sociology” written by Rob webb, Hal Westergaard, Kieth Trobe and Liz Steel defines childhood as “ a socially defined age status” going on to say that there are major differences in how childhood is defined, both historically, and culturally, similarly, Stephen Wagg says of childhood;
Introduction In a child’s upbringing, the concept of social class and race plays a pivotal role in a child’s growth and development. In the ethnographic study, “ Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life”, the author, Annette Lareau argue that the influences of children with distinct socioeconomic backgrounds can determine how a child will be raised. The author primarily focuses on two distinctive practices of child-rearing: concerted cultivation and the accomplishments of natural growth. Lareau explains that both of these distinctive patterns of childrearing have their own benefits and drawbacks, but emphasizes on how concerted cultivation and parent involvement allows children to gain a deeper understanding of the world and the ability to fluently interact with social institutions. Also, the practice of concerted cultivation allows children to develop skills that are shown to be beneficial for the future. In contrast, the practice of natural growth limits the child’s language and communication skills, in which they are not adequately prepared for the challenges of adulthood. In my opinion, I believe that the way a child is raised has a significant impact on a child’s future.
Primary education, Supplemental tutoring, summer camps, secondary education, family activities, higher education, first full-time job, subsequent employment, present employment with the age of the person, present residence, second residences"(pp.336-340). He lets you look into the life of different people, some from upper-class families and some from lower class families. The reader can see for themselves that the way they are brought up, whether it is from and upper-class family or lower-class family, it affects them. It
She also talks about how middle class parenting differs from the other social class. The middle class parents mostly dominate the lives of their children while the working class parents cannot concentrate that much on their kids. She also brought a name for this phenomena called “Concerted Cultivation”.
In roughly 95 million middle-class American homes the notion of making last minute plans to share quality time with family and friends is challenging. With their priority for leisure time being focused on their children’s futures, making plans often involves two to four weeks advance notice. However, 200 million working-class and poverty level families accommodate those last minute plans with ease. Parenting styles in American families is what Annette Lareau addresses in Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life. Lareau identifies middle-class families as concerted cultivators, mothers and fathers that dominate their children’s lives with established, controlled and organized activities intended to give them experiences that
Exploring the nuances of race and social position beginning in childhood and culminating in adulthood Lareau explores different approaches exercised by parents in raising children. Separating families into three categories, including: middle-class, working-class, and poor, the author began her study. Attempting to answer the question, “What is the outcome of these different philosophies and approaches to child rearing?” Lareau discovers that the answer was found in the “transmission of differential advantages” (Lareau 2011:5). Accordingly, these advantages equip children with tools to navigate through life progressively or prohibitively respective to the individual instruction obtained in childhood. In unearthing these discoveries, the author employed the use of ethnography through naturalistic observation utilizing field notes and taped recordings of interviews with family members.
To begin, my immediate family is well-educated, meaning that both of my parents received a primary education, but also went on to study and graduate from universities. I believe this factor allowed me to succeed in coming to ISU, because my parents were able to recognize the significance of their higher education and how it correlated with their careers and current lifestyle. These factors contributed to my parents instilling in me the need to receive a college education in order to have more access to future opportunities.
Lareau, in Unequal Childhoods, focuses on socioeconomic status and how that affects outcomes in the education system and the workplace. While examining middle-class, working-class and poor families, Lareau witnessed differing logics of parenting, which could greatly determine a child’s future success. Working-class and poor families allow their children an accomplishment of natural growth, whereas middle-class parents prepare their children through concerted cultivation. The latter provides children with a sense of entitlement, as parents encourage them to negotiate and challenge those in authority. Parents almost overwhelm their children with organized activities, as we witnessed in the life of Garrett Tallinger. Due to his parents and their economic and cultural capital, Garrett was not only able to learn in an educational setting, but through differing activities, equipping him with several skills to be successful in the world. Lareau suggests these extra skills allow children to “think of themselves as special and as entitled to receive certain kinds of services from adults” (39). Adults in the school system are in favor of these skills through concerted cultivation, and Bourdieu seems to suggest that schools can often misrecognize these skills as natural talent/abilities when it’s merely cultivated through capital. This then leads to inequalities in the education system and academic attainments.
The book Unequal Childhoods describes observations made by Annette Lareau to shed light on the significance of social class and how it affects student’s learning. Lareau presents her observations by highlighting the two dominant ways of parenting that ultimately affect how successful students become as they transition into adulthood. These styles of parenting consist of Concerted Cultivation where parents put through kids through structured activities, and Accomplishment of Natural Growth where unrestrictive freedom and directives are exercised (20-22).
1. In Annette Lareau’s Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life, the author truly struck a nerve with her statement that “America may be the land of opportunity, but it is also a land of inequality” (Lareau, pg. 3, 2003). As an African-American child who experienced a middle-class upbringing for most of my life, I am one of many people who have experienced a mixture of both the opportunities this country provides for people, but the inequalities that follow me in my path of success in life and that of my family and peers as well. Transitioning to Lareau’s observations in her book, she states and describes two types of parenting styles embraced by middle class parents and working-class parents. Lareau argues that parents of the working-class
Imagine a perfectly ripe Granny Smith apple. Famished, you bite into it, expecting a crisp, juicy crunch. Instead, it's soggy. Acidic. Different. Confused, you reel back to view the apple's interior: it's not an opaque, light green, it's a glistening orange. The fruit, at least on the inside, is
In Meredith Small’s article Our Babies, Ourselves she focuses on people’s social and psychological development through examining the different cultural aspects of raising a child. During this process she compares the American perspective of treating babies, to those of the Gusii and the Dutch. Throughout her examination many points are made that I believe can give the reader’s a valuable understanding of the impact of different means of parenthood on a child’s future development.
All families want their children to be happy, healthy, and grow. Social classes make a difference in how parents go about meeting this goal. In Annette Lareau book, Unequal Childhoods: Class, Race, and Family Life, she promotes middle class parents as concerted cultivation. Middle class parents encourage their children’s talents, opinions, and skills. For example, engaging their children in organized activities and closely monitoring children’s experiences in school. According to Lareau, middle class children gain an emerging sense of entitlement through this pattern of converted cultivation. This causes a focus on children’s individual development. There are signs that the middle class children gain advantages from the experience of concerted cultivation. However, the working class and poor children do not gain this advantage.