Between Generations concerns powerful memories that continue to shape the present, but in this case in almost all families throughout the world. What is it that parents pass down to their children? How can we understand the mixture of conscious and unconscious models, myths, and material inheritance that are intertwined in both family and individual life stories? These questions turn out to be unexpectedly complicated, and answering them has suggested how a life-story approach can provide a new key to research on the dynamics of the family and on social change.
Because culture is the essence of what makes individual humans into a group, the core of human social identity, its continuity is vital. Cultures are always changing, but the stability of languages, religions, and cultural habits can be astonishing. In contrast to the claims of culture to represent tradition over centuries, stands the sheer brevity of individual human life. Hence, the universal necessity for transmission between generations exists.
This paperback edition in the Memory and Narrative series, brings together, contributions from the Americas and Asia as well as from Western and Eastern Europe. They combine the techniques of life story research with the insights of family therapy. Interdisciplinary and intellectually stimulating, the volume will appeal to students in many areas, including history, sociology, literature, psychology, and anthropology.