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Representing the Family: how does the State "Think Family"?

Lookup NU author(s): James Cornford, Dr Susan Baines, Professor Rob WilsonORCiD


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Over the last decade the family and family-centred policies have received increasing attention in policy for public service, culminating the emphatic instruction to "think family" individually, institutionally and collectively. This has occurred at a time when the sociology of the family has increasingly emphasises the difficulties of thinking family in a coherent way. We explore this agenda through an examination of the representational tools with which public service professionals and managers have been recently equipped. We conclude by questioning the adequacy of these tools for effectively representing family relations.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Cornford J, Baines S, Wilson R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Policy and Politics

Year: 2013

Volume: 41

Issue: 1

Pages: 1-18

Print publication date: 01/08/2012

ISSN (print): 0305-5736

ISSN (electronic): 1470-8442

Publisher: Social Policy Press


DOI: 10.1332/030557312X645838


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