Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Laura Bernardi, Dimitri Mortelmans, Ornella Larenza
    Pages 1-26 Open Access
  3. Defining Lone Parents

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 27-27
    2. Marie -Thérèse Letablier, Karin Wall
      Pages 29-53 Open Access
    3. Fabienne Portier-Le Cocq
      Pages 75-92 Open Access
    4. Laura Bernardi, Ornella Larenza
      Pages 93-108 Open Access
  4. Demographics of Lone Parents

  5. Income and Poverty Among Lone Parents

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 165-165
    2. Dimitri Mortelmans, Christine Defever
      Pages 191-211 Open Access
    3. Susan Harkness
      Pages 213-234 Open Access
  6. Labour Market Behavior of Lone Parents

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 235-235
    2. Emanuela Struffolino, Dimitri Mortelmans
      Pages 257-282 Open Access
  7. Well-Being and Health of Lone Parents

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 283-283
    2. Diana Dinescu, Megan Haney-Claus, Eric Turkheimer, Robert E. Emery
      Pages 285-301 Open Access
    3. Carmel Hannan
      Pages 303-322 Open Access

About this book


Lone parenthood is an increasing reality in the 21st century, reinforced by the diffusion of divorce and separation. This volume provides a comprehensive portrait of lone parenthood at the beginning of the XXI century from a life course perspective. The contributions included in this volume examine the dynamics of lone parenthood in the life course and explore the trajectories of lone parents in terms of income, poverty, labour, market behaviour, wellbeing, and health. Throughout, comparative analyses of data from countries as France, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Hungary, and Australia help portray how lone parenthood varies between regions, cultures, generations, and institutional settings. The findings show that one-parent households are inhabited by a rather heterogeneous world of mothers and fathers facing different challenges.

Readers will not only discover the demographics and diversity of lone parents, but also the variety of social representations and discourses about the changing phenomenon of lone parenthood. The book provides a mixture of qualitative and quantitative studies on lone parenthood. Using large scale and longitudinal panel and register data, the reader will gain insight in complex processes across time. More qualitative case studies on the other hand discuss the definition of lone parenthood, the public debate around it, and the social and subjective representations of lone parents themselves. 

This book aims at sociologists, demographers, psychologists, political scientists, family therapists, and policy makers who want to gain new insights into one of the most striking changes in family forms over the last 50 years.

This book is open access under a CC BY License.


Divorce and separation Living arrangements Lone parenthood as family form Lone parents' family composition and policy arrangements Mothers and fathers Single parents Family Dynamics Family Welfare Vulnerability Lone Parenthood Life Course Open access

Editors and affiliations

  • Laura Bernardi
    • 1
  • Dimitri Mortelmans
    • 2
  1. 1.National Centre of Competence in Research LIVES – Overcoming Vulnerability: Life course perspectives (NCCR Lives)University of LausanneLausanneSwitzerland
  2. 2.CLLS, Faculty of Social SciencesUniversity of AntwerpAntwerpBelgium

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Lone Parenthood in the Life Course
  • Editors Laura Bernardi
    Dimitri Mortelmans
  • Series Title Life Course Research and Social Policies
  • Series Abbreviated Title Life Course Research,Social Policies
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • License CC BY
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-63293-3
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-319-87519-4
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-63295-7
  • Series ISSN 2211-7776
  • Series E-ISSN 2211-7784
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XIII, 338
  • Number of Illustrations 33 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Family
    Population Economics
    Personality and Social Psychology
    Sociology, general
  • Buy this book on publisher's site