In the search for the causes of and solutions to social problems, no social institution has been allocated such a central role as the family. This volume examines how `the family' is constituted both in explanations of social problems and in modes of state intervention. The contributors consider some of the most controversial social policy issues in Britain today: domestic violence; child abuse; old age; mental health; juvenile delinquency; and poverty and homelessness.
In examining these social problems, the contributors address key definitional issues, assess traditional and alternative theoretical perspectives and survey different modes of intervention. They show just how pervasive and complex the state regulation of family life is in contemporary society.
With its illuminating interdisciplinary approach, this volume is an essential textbook for students and practitioners in all fields of family-related social work, social policy and social science disciplines. It is a Course Book for The Open University course D311 Family Life and Social Policy.