As the everyday family lives of children and young people come to be increasingly defined as matters of public policy and concern, it is important to raise the question of how we can understand the contested terrain between rmal family troubles and troubled and troubling families. In this important, timely and thought-provoking publication, a wide range of contributors explore how troubles feature in rmal families, and how the rmal features in troubled families. Drawing on research on a wide range of substantive topics - including infant care, sibling conflict, divorce, disability, illness, migration and asylum-seeking, substance misuse, violence, kinship care, and forced marriage - the contributors aim to promote dialogue between researchers addressing mainstream family change and diversity in everyday lives, and those specialising in specific problems which prompt professional interventions. In tackling these contentious and difficult issues across a variety of topics, the book addresses a wide audience, including policy makers, service users and practitioners, as well as family studies scholars more generally who are interested in issues of family change.
Dr Jane Ribbens McCarthy is Reader in Family Studies, in the Centre for Citizenship, Identities and Governance (CCIG) at the Open University. Her research interests and publications focus on families and relationships, particularly children and young people's family lives, including their experiences of bereavement and loss. Dr Carol-Ann Hooper is Senior Lecturer in Social Policy at the University of York. She has worked in the overlapping fields of child protection and family support, gender and crime, and violence against women, for over 20 years. Val Gillies is Research Professor in Social and Policy Studies at the Weeks Centre for Social and Policy Research, London South Bank University. Her research interests focus on family, parenting, social class, and marginalised children and young people, and she has published extensively in journals on these topics.