Working with Euro-American Families in the United States During the Perinatal Period and Early Childhood

  • J. Martin Maldonado-DuranEmail author
  • Clara Aisenstein


This chapter discusses concepts like “whiteness,” what is Euro-American, and the commonalities and differences between different immigrant groups. There is emphasis on the parenting values based on Protestant ethics, which values hard work, self-reliance, individual responsibility, and accountability. These values are reinforced by parents in order to promote the adaptation of young children to a society that values independence, individuation, and high social mobility, as well as economic success. Parents and other caregivers discourage interdependence (mother–child, father–child, relying on other children) and promote children self-regulating, sleeping by themselves, and eating on their own devices after the first birthday. These practices and values are often “exported” to traditional societies where they are seen as more modern and “scientific” when in reality they are adaptations to cultural values and economic necessities. Many mothers work outside the home even during the first year of the baby’s life and have to rely on child care services. The general trend during the preschool years also emphasizes obedience, complying with rules, and consequences for undesirable behavior so the child learns to adapt to those expectations.


Euro-American Caucasian family “White trash” Protestant ethic Nuclear family Time-outs Cultural dominance Eurocentrism Whiteness Working mother Natural consequences Self-reliance 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Menninger Department of PsychiatryBaylor College of MedicineHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Indian Health ServiceSan DiegoUSA

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