Interplay Of Human Lives Historical Time

Interplay Of Human Lives Historical Time

The first of these themes that Elder suggested was the interplay of human lives and historical time As social historians and sociologists began to study individual and family pathways they observed that individuals born in different generations faced different possibilities and limitations within their different historical worlds or generations Based on research and observation they suggested that as social change occurs it will affect one group or generation differently than it will affect following groups and generations An example of this is Elders 1974 research on the Great Depression and how that effected young and middle aged children He found that the life course of the younger children when compared with the middle aged children were more seriously affected by family hardship Others have provided evidence for Elders research as well Elder 1986 Rindfuss Swicegood Rosenfeld 1987 Shanahan et al 1998

Timing of Lives

In this theme specific life events and transitions were studied by researchers to see at what ages they occurred In looking at the different studies there were many ways to classify entrances and exits from certain statuses and roles In B Georges 1993 study he classified these entrances and exits as either ontime or offtime based on the social norms of transitions George 1993 For example childbearing in adolesence is considered offtime in industrial countries such as the US but in many preindustrial countries it can be seen as ontime

Another way researchers look at the timing is by agegraded differences formal social organizations based on age In looking at what influences these social organization differences in roles and behaviors researchers linked it to the influence of biological psychological social and spiritual processes However it should be noted that life course scholars and researchers have not directly addressed the issue of spiritual age So in the life course perspective age is usually considered from a biopsychosocial framework Cavanaugh 1996 Kimmel1990Settersten Mayer1997

B George also looked at the order in which life events and transitions occurred to gain a better understanding of age regularities and irregularities George 1993 Most of the studies that have been performed focus on children completing school and their entrance into adulthood Modell Furstenberg Hershberg 1976 Settersten 1998 ShanahanMiech Elder1998 Along with the age regularities and irregularities researchers are interested in the length of time that an individual or family spend in a particular area without changes in their status or roles In general some researchers such a B George are concluding that the longer we experience certain environments and conditions the more likely it is that our behavior will be affected George 1996

The final interest of scholars and researchers is the pace of transitions In their studies they have found that the transition into young adulthood completing school leaving home getting married appears to be timed more rapidly than middle and late adulthood transitions retiring or losing parents Hareven 1978 2000

Linked or Interdependent Lives

Elders 1993 third theme emphasizes how the interdependence of human relationships both support and control In this area support and control researchers have paid particular attention to the family as a source for this

Links Between Family Members Elders 1974 longitudinal research of children raised during the Great Depression is the base for the assumption of interdependence between family members In his research he found that as greater economic pressures were experienced by parents the risk for depressed feelings and marital conflict increased As a result of this the parents ability to care for their children decreased and their children had an increased likelihood of showing signs of emotional distress academic trouble and behavior problems Elder 1974 This connection between hardship nurturance and child behaviors is now well esta

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