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9. Relative Contributions of Families and Peers to Children's Social Development

Ross D. Parke, Sandra D. Simpkins, David J. McDowell, Mina Kim, Colleen Killian, Jessica Dennis, Mary L. Flyr, Margaret Wild and Yumee Rah


Subject Psychology

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631217534.2004.00012.x


Extract

Families have traditionally been viewed as the major socialization agency for the development of children's social behavior. Under the influence of Freudian theory and subsequently Bowlby's fusion of psychoanalytic and ethological approaches, the mother-child relationship has remained a prominent cornerstone of children's social development. In recent decades, our views of the socialization process have changed in a variety of ways. First, our limited view of the mother-child dyad as central to the socialization process has been replaced by a recognition of the family as a social system in which fathers, siblings, and the marital relationship are all viewed as playing important roles in children's social development ( Parke & Buriel, 1998 ). Second, it is increasingly recognized that socialization is a multifaceted process which includes a variety of influential agents beyond the family, such as extended families, adult mentors, formal and informal support systems, and children's peers and friends. Of particular interest is the role of families and peers in the socialization matrix. Several views concerning the relative importance of family and peers as well as the degree of linkage between these two social systems have been suggested over the last several decades. As Hartup (1979) has noted in his classic formulation, children's relationships with peers are viewed as either ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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