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Dad in the Twenty-First Century
  • Wade C. Mackey
Part of the The Springer Series in Adult Development and Aging book series (SSAD)


This chapter looks at fathering as a generalized developmental state in the man’s life and examines how that putative stage meshes with the U.S. cultural mosaic of the twenty-first century. Developmental stage is used here in the sense of an interval of time in which a set of motivations are more easily organized and triggered than at other times. The concepts of “imprinting” and “critical or sensitive period” are relevant here (Hess, 1964; Lorenz, 1958, 1965). Puberty is a good example of such a stage. After the mad rush of hormones have finished their appointed tasks, the postpubescent’s sense of romance is better enabled to be initiated and maintained than during his or her prepubescence. Prior to puberty, the other gender is often a source of disdain directed at a class of people, or near people, who can be dismissed without a second or third thought. After puberty, the other gender is a lot more attractive. If my memory serves me correctly, in high school the only thing more important than which females were in a classroom was whether the classroom was on fire or not.


Violent Crime Family Violence Marital Adjustment Social Father Paternity Leave 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wade C. Mackey
    • 1
  1. 1.Southeastern Community CollegeWest BurlingtonUSA

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