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‘They are Alone in Their Parenthood’: Parenting Support and (Re)building Community

Julkaistu 22.2.2022


This article uniquely contributes to critical discussions about parenting support in contemporary social science research that has examined the recent political and public attention on parenting. The studies highlight the increased attention on individualised parenting support focused on the parent–child relationship. Based on an analysis of 310 family support projects initiated in Finland, this research found that another orientation exists alongside individualised parenting support, which has gained only little attention in recent studies about parenting support. That alternative focuses on a communal parenting support, wherein parenting support is conducted by means of community (re)building. This article summarises how anxiety about parenting overlaps with discussions about community as well as ‘the family decline’, creating a need for community (re)building. In this study, I show how concern within family support projects is harnessed to establish ‘communion’, representing a third category alongside the more common sociological notions of ‘society’ and ‘community’. However, fundamental tensions appear as projects attempt to build community, which I also discuss in this article.

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Ella Sihvonen

Lisätietoja julkaisusta

  • Vertaisarvioitu: kyllä.
  • Avoin saatavuus: kyllä.
  • Koko viite: Sihvonen, E. (2022). ‘They are Alone in Their Parenthood’: Parenting Support and (Re)building Community. Sociological Research Online.

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