ERIC Number: ED257561
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Apr
Reference Count: 0
The Effects of Single-Parenting on Sex-Role Development: The State of the Art.
Stevenson, Michael R.
Current thought about the effects of single-parenting on children's sex-role development has supported (1) the traditional view that being raised in a single-parent home is deleterious to the well-being of children; (2) the conditional view noting that differences exist between children in father-absent and father-present homes (but only in particular situations or only in a subset of single-parent children); and (3) the conservative view that the literature is too inconsistent to draw sound conclusions. Application of Hedges' (1982) meta-analytic techniques to the literature indicates that for females no clear evidence exists for effects due to father-absence. Preschool father-absent boys made less stereotypical choices of toys and activities when compared to father-present age mates. They also were likely to have less masculine scores on projective measures, particularly those assumed to measure identification with father. Older father-absent boys showed more stereotypical overt behavior, especially aggression, when compared to father-present boys. Thus, the meta-analysis supports the conditional view. Future research concerning the relationship between single-parenting and the sex-role development of offspring must consider both the questionable usefulness of the father-absence paradigm and implications of the fact that sex-typing is multidimensional. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Ball State Univ., Muncie, IN.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Toronto, Ontario, Canada, April 25-28, 1985).