The author aims to help make low-income, unmarried, and minority fathers more visible by reviewing the emerging literature base on this population and addressing important conceptual, methodological, and policy issues. Recent evidence is reviewed concerning patterns of fatherhood, factors that support or prohibit fathers' active involvement with their children, and the impact of paternal involvement on children's development. To move the field forward, advances are needed in methodology (increased use of father reports, multiple methods, and longitudinal studies), measurement (greater diversity and depth, multiple reporters), and theoretical and conceptual definitions (family systems perspectives, new and inclusive definitions of fatherhood). In particular, a multidisciplinary and contextualized perspective is an imperative aid to significantly increase understanding of the lives and impact of low-income, unmarried, and minority fathers. (Author abstract)
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