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Psychological Science and Education psyedu.ru
2015. Vol. 7, No. 3. pp. 1–11.
doi:10.17759/psyedu.2015070301
ISSN: 2074-5885 (online)

Parenting and Parenthood as Research Domains

Polivanova N. Ph.D. in Psychology, Leading researcher, Federal public scientific institution “Psychological institute” of the Russian Academy of Education, laboratory of psychological bases of new educational technologies, Moscow, Russia, VChernenilov@gmail.com
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The article presents an analysis of a number of publications which concern the modern socio-cultural situation and its consequences on contemporary parenthood. The constructs "parenthood" and "parenting" are presented:. the first one refers to a social role of an adult with a child in relation to other social roles and the latter with the process of child rearing. The major social trends are presented: Contemporary parenthood is analyzed and problematized due to the nature of modern challenges faced by educated parents. The following trends are discussed: erosion of understandable, clearly presented stereotypes and patterns of child rearing in the family, increase of variability of practices of child-parent interaction, growth of supply on the market of goods and services. All these major social trends bring to the sunset of "natural" parenthood and the decision to have a child turns to be a consciously planned strategy. The article shows that the appeal to expert knowledge in child rearing which is characteristic of postmodern era leads to new uncertainties due to the variety of inconsistent advice and expertise. Discussion of the transformations experienced by the family shows the transition from child-centered to adult-centered pattern. Thus, the conclusion is that contemporary parenting takes place against many (conscious and unconscious) contradictions, particularly between the growing importance of the values of self-realization and commitment and the value of parenthood. This contradiction brings to stress and anxiety which in turn damages the perception of oneself as a parent. The growth of interest in the study of parental identity and self-efficacy is considered to be a promising direction of research.

Keywords: parenthood, parenting, contemporary family, contemporary social trends

Rubric: Developmental Psychology

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17759/psyedu.2015070301

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