The Myth of the Missing Black Father.

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Coles, Roberta. (Editor)
Green, Charles. (Editor)
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Statistics show that close to 70 percent of all births to black mothers are nonmarital, giving rise to the stereotype that black fathers are largely absent. However, while black fathers are less likely than white and Hispanic fathers to marry their child's mother, many black fathers continue to parent through cohabitation and visitation, providing caretaking, financial, and in-kind support.

This volume recasts the meaning of black fatherhood in its many manifestations, exploring two-parent families, cohabitation, single custodial fathering, stepfathering, noncustodial visitation, and parenting by extended family members and friends. Contributors examine the way in which black men perceive and decipher their parenting responsibilities, paying careful attention to psychosocial, economic, and political factors that affect the ability to parent. Chapters compare the diversity of African American fatherhood with negative portrayals in politics, academia, and literature, and, through qualitative analysis and original profiles, ultimately refute the argument that young black fathers are irresponsible caregivers. This collection also includes several interviews with daughters of absent fathers and concludes with the effects of certain policy decisions on responsible parenting. (Author abstract)

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