This book presents an in-depth study of twenty-four Hindu families, of different caste and class groups, who live in a newly urbanized part of India. Beginning with a two-year study of family organization and child-rearing practices in the mid-1960s, the author follows the lives of 132 children and their extended families over nearly three decades. The book's main focus is women--the socialization of girls and the significance of women's roles through the life cycle in a society where the patrifocal extended family is predominant. The author examines the effects of caste and class on women's lives, and the effects of recent schooling and delayed marriage. Longitudinal research makes it possible to examine the impact of recent urbanization and modernization on groups of contemporary Indian women. The voices and changing perspectives of these women are captured in a series of intergenerational interviews that imply further change for Indian systems of family and gender. Students and researchers in the fields of psychology, anthropology, cultural studies, and women's studies will find this book to be as intriguing as it is essential.
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