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Millie Acevedo bore her first child before the age of 16 and dropped out of high school to care for her newborn. Now 27, she is the unmarried mother of three and is raising her kids in one of Philadelphia's poorest neighborhoods. Would she and her children be better off if she had waited to have them and had married their father first? Why do so many poor American youth like Millie continue to have children before they can afford to take care of them? Over a span of five years, sociologists Kathryn Edin and Maria Kefalas talked in-depth with 162 low-income single moms like Millie to learn how they think about marriage and family. Promises I Can Keep offers an intimate look at what marriage and motherhood mean to these women and provides the most extensive on-the-ground study to date of why they put children before marriage despite the daunting challenges they know lie ahead.
Over a span of five years, [the authors] talked in-depth with 162 low-income single moms ... to learn how they think about marriage and family. [This book] offers an intimate look at what marriage and motherhood mean to these women and provides [an] extensive on-the-ground study ... of why they put children before marriage despite the daunting challenges they know lie ahead.. [This book] argues that until poor young women and men have greater access to jobs that lead to financial security - that is, until they can hope for a rewarding life outside of bearing and raising children - they will continue to have children far sooner than most Americans think they should, and in less than ideal circumstances.--
What would my mother say? How would she want me to handle this situation? How can I make this tough decision and stay true to myself? What would my mother say? Sam Haskell still asks himself these questions every day. When Haskell was young, his devoted mother, Mary, instilled in her son the values of character, faith, and honor by setting an example and asking him to promise to live his life according to her lessons. He did, and those promises have served Haskell consistently from his Mississippi boyhood to his long career at the venerable William Morris Agency in Beverly Hills. In this inspiring memoir full of touching stories and amusing anecdotes, Haskell reveals how he kept his pledge to his mother to live a decent life–even in the shark-infested waters of Hollywood, where he handled the hottest stars and packaged the highest-rated shows–by refusing to become the cliché of an amoral agent. Here is Haskell as a child in Amory, Mississippi (pop. 7,000), discovering the power of hope as he waits for an unlikely visit from the “Cheer Man” (a representative of the detergent company who gave ten dollars to anyone using the brand), learning humility after pursuing an eighth-grade “Good Citizenship” award he cockily assumed he’d win, confronting the complications of human character when a near-fatal car crash exposed his judgmental father’s true nature. Years later, in Hollywood, Haskell would rely on his mother’s teachings–honesty, self-reliance, and belief in God–as he swiftly rose from the William Morris mailroom to eventually become the company’s Worldwide Head of Television. His capacity for friendship and his insistence on living his version of the Golden Rule (being “thoughtfully political”) allowed him to handle various client crises and the tense negotiations that nearly scuttled the last years of Everybody Loves Raymond and the entire existence of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Haskell has achieved success through self-respect, and from his story we learn how we, too, can maintain our dignity when faced with life’s challenges. This stirring memoir is a testament to mothers everywhere who instill in their sons the lasting values they need to become good men and devoted fathers. From the Hardcover edition.
An enchanting and poignant story about the unfailing power of love in a world turned upside down by war—from the bestselling author of Tides of Honour. Summer 1755, Acadia Young, beautiful Amélie Belliveau lives with her family among the Acadians of Grande Pré, Nova Scotia, content with her life on their idyllic farm. Along with their friends, the neighbouring Mi’kmaq, the community believes they can remain on neutral political ground despite the rising tides of war. But peace can be fragile, and sometimes faith is not enough. When the Acadians refuse to pledge allegiance to the British in their war against the French, the army invades Grande Pré, claims the land, and rips the people from their homes. Amélie’s entire family, alongside the other Acadians, is exiled to ports unknown aboard dilapidated ships. Fortunately, Amélie has made a powerful ally. Having survived his own harrowing experience at the hands of the English, Corporal Connor MacDonnell is a reluctant participant in the British plan to expel the Acadians from their homeland. His sympathy for Amélie gradually evolves into a profound love, and he resolves to help her and her family in any way he can—even if it means treason. As the last warmth of summer fades, more ships arrive to ferry the Acadians away, and Connor is forced to make a decision that will alter the future forever. Heart-wrenching and captivating, Promises to Keep is a gloriously romantic tale of a young couple forced to risk everything amidst the uncertainties of war.
As seen on PBS’s POV An unprecedented guide to helping black boys achieve success at every stage of their lives—at home, at school, and in the world Regardless of how wealthy or poor their parents are, all black boys must confront and surmount the “achievement gap”: a divide that shows up not only in our sons’ test scores, but in their social and emotional development, their physical well-being, and their outlook on life. As children, they score as high on cognitive tests as their peers, but at some point, the gap emerges. Why? This is the question Joe Brewster, M.D., and Michèle Stephenson asked when their own son, Idris, began struggling in a new school. As they filmed his experiences for their award-winning documentary American Promise, they met an array of researchers who had not only identified the reasons for the gap, but had come up with practical, innovative solutions to close it. In Promises Kept, they explain • how to influence your son’s brain before he’s even born • how to tell the difference between authoritarian and authoritative discipline—and why it matters • how to create an educational program for your son that matches his needs • how to prepare him for explicit and implicit racism in school and in the wider world • how to help your child develop resilience, self-discipline, emotional intelligence, and a positive outlook that will last a lifetime Filled with innovative research, practical strategies, and the voices of parents and children who are grappling with these issues firsthand, Promises Kept will challenge your assumptions and inspire you to make sure your child isn’t lost in the gap. Praise for Promises Kept “The authors offer a plethora of information and advice geared toward the specific developmental needs of black boys. . . . Thorough and detailed, this guidebook is also a call to action. As Brewster sees it, when people of color remain complacent, they not only break a tacit promise to future generations to achieve social equity, they also imperil the futures of both the nation and the planet. A practical and impassioned parenting guide.”—Kirkus Reviews “A penetrating look at the standard practices, at school and at home, that contribute to the achievement gap between the races and the sexes that seems to put black boys at a disadvantage. [Brewster and Stephenson] debunk myths and offer ten parenting and education strategies to improve the prospects for black boys to help them overcome racial stereotypes and low expectations. . . . This is a practical and insightful look at the particular challenges of raising black males.”—Booklist
No one, not even god can write a perfect end for you! Unless he is dying. Mighty and irreplaceable as they are, words are lethal weapons that change lives… by sometimes linking two hearts and sometimes shattering everything irreparably. But when they are woven into promises, the change lasts forever. He had almost lost himself when she brought him back to life with her promises. Dying from a dreadful tumour, every night before they went to sleep, she took a portion of his heart and soul as promises. For better or worse, he'd have to keep the promises for the rest of his life. On his journey of fulfilling those promises, his bond is strengthened with all those who, like him, are keeping their promises. What were those amusing, surprising and painful promises they all kept? Can you live and die…both at the same time? Meet the girl who changed the lives of the people she loved, and those who find their true selves in Keeping the Promises.
A warm, intimate portrait of Jackie Robinson, America's sports icon, told from the unique perspective of a unique insider: his only daughter. Sharon Robinson shares memories of her famous father in this warm loving biography of the man who broke the color barrier in baseball. Jackie Robinson was an outstanding athlete, a devoted family man and a dedicated civil rights activist. The author explores the fascinating circumstances surrounding Jackie Robinson's breakthrough. She also tells the off-the-field story of Robinson's hard-won victories and the inspiring effect he had on his family, his community. . . his country! Includes never-before-published letters by Jackie Robinson, as well as photos from the Robinson family archives.
In the last two decades, research on the life course has successfully combined and integrated different and rather isolated fields of social concerns such as: the labor market, family solidarity, education, employment, retirement, and social policy. It has also developed a special focus on crucial problems of sociological research, which includes the understanding of micromacro phenomena, the dynamics of social change, and international comparisons. Contributors to this volume take an international, comparative approach in applying the life course theoretical framework to issues of work and career. Life course research focuses on the relationship between institutions and individuals across the life span and illuminates the impact of modernization on the shaping of biographies. Industrial service societies are characterized by historically new contingencies of living arrangements and biographies. These contingencies differ according to the extent to which life course patterns are regulated by social institutions. In the continental European context, institutional frameworks continue to define the timing and sequencing of transitions across the life course. In less regulated market societies, like the United States and Great Britain, biographies and living arrangements are shaped more by the interaction of markets, social networks, and individual decisions. In active welfare states, institutional resources and rules continue to mediate the effects of social change on the life course. What the editors and contributors to this fine compendium anticipate is a change on the cultural level toward more equality. This trend supports young people, and women in particular, in their expectations concerning an egalitarian relationship. This expectation is not taken for granted from the point of view of the male partner, but has to be negotiated in decisionmaking processes as an issue that concerns the couple as a unit. Thus, the way in which people interact is profoundly impacted by the values and goals of equity demands. Walter R. Heinz is professor of sociology and social psychology, and director, Graduate School of Social Sciences, University of Bremen. Victor W. Marshall is professor of sociology, and director of the Institute on Aging, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Carolina.
Backlash against Welfare Mothers is a forceful examination of how and why a state-level revolt against welfare, begun in the late 1940s, was transformed into a national-level assault that destroyed a critical part of the nation's safety net, with tragic consequences for American society. With a wealth of original research, Ellen Reese puts recent debates about the contemporary welfare backlash into historical perspective. She provides a closer look at these early antiwelfare campaigns, showing why they were more successful in some states than others and how opponents of welfare sometimes targeted Puerto Ricans and Chicanos as well as blacks for cutbacks. Her research reveals both the continuities and changes in American welfare opposition from the late 1940s to the present. Reese brings new evidence to light that reveals how large farmers and racist politicians, concerned about the supply of cheap labor, appealed to white voters' racial resentments and stereotypes about unwed mothers, blacks, and immigrants in the 1950s. She then examines congressional failure to replace the current welfare system with a more popular alternative in the 1960s and 1970s, which paved the way for national assaults on welfare. Taking a fresh look at recent debates on welfare reform, she explores how and why politicians competing for the white vote and right-wing think tanks promoting business interests appeased the Christian right and manufactured consent for cutbacks through a powerful, racially coded discourse. Finally, through firsthand testimonies, Reese vividly portrays the tragic consequences of current welfare policies and calls for a bold new agenda for working families.