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Transitions to parenthood in EuropeA comparative life course perspective$
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Ann Nilsen, Julia Brannen, and Suzan Lewis

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9781847428646

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847428646.001.0001

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(p.1) One Introduction
Transitions to parenthood in Europe

Ann Nilsen

Julia Brannen

Suzan Lewis

Policy Press

The chapter introduces the study and the main topics addressed. The discussion focuses on research on the transition to motherhood and fatherhood and the ways in which these life course transitions intersect with other life course transitions. The chapter highlights the comparative multi-layered case study design. The importance and uniqueness of the design and the life course perspective is outlined. The chapter presents the design of the book and highlights the rationale for discussing the life course perspective as an overarching theoretical framework in a separate chapter (2). The complex methodological design also merits a separate chapter (3), and the comparative cross-national analysis in the empirical chapters adds analytical strength to the discussions and demonstrates the usefulness of the methodology.

Keywords:   Life course, biographical interviews, transitions, parenthood, work-family, cross-national research, case studies, social inequalities

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