First Book on Grandparenting Across Diverse Global Societies Co-edited by TCD Academic

Posted on: 24 May 2012

Grandparenting in the 21st century is at the heart of profound family and societal changes. It is of increasing social and economic significance yet many dimensions of grandparenting are still poorly understood. Contemporary Grandparenting is the first book to analyse grandparenting across diverse societies. It combines new theories with up-to-date findings to document the changing nature of grandparenting across global contexts.

In this highly original book, leading contributors analyse how grandparenting differs according to the nature of the welfare state and the cultural context, how family breakdown influences grandparenting. It also explores men’s changing roles as grandfathers. Commenting on the significance of the book, co-editor and Associate Professor of Social Policy and Ageing,   Virpi Timonen said: “Grandparenting is an active and dynamic family practice. Grandparents today face conflicting norms and expectations about their roles, but have a self determination to forge new identities outside of traditional expectations within societal and cultural constraints.”

In his endorsement of the book, Professor of Human Development at Cornell University, Karl Pillemer, states: “This book provides an extraordinary portrait of grandparenting in the 21st century and significantly advances the scientific study of intergenerational relations. The contributions from outstanding scholars cover a broad range of theoretical perspectives, with an international focus. It is a must-read for everyone interested in the role of grandparents in contemporary society.”

Virpi Timonen is Associate Professor and founding Director of the Social Policy and Ageing Research Centre at the School of Social Work and Social Policy in Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. Her co-editor Sara Arber is Professor of Sociology at the University of Surrey, Fellow of the British Academy and recipient of the British Society of Gerontology Outstanding Achievement Award in 2011.  Professor Timonen is also co-investigator with The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA), from which data on children in the care of Irish grandparents has emerged.