This chapter explores the effects of fatherless families on children. It examines the connection between father's absence and juvenile delinquency, intellectual and psychosocial functioning, school achievement, masculine identity, mental illness, and marital instability. The review found inconclusive evidence for blanket generalizations about the consequences of father's absence. It found that the impact of father's absence on a boy is conditioned and to a large extent mediated by interacting variables. The review concludes that the number of parents in the home is likely to be less crucial to the child's development than the family functioning of the present members. Practical implications for support programs are discussed. 1 table and numerous references.
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