Section on Family

**The Online Submission System will open December 6, 2013**

*Deadline for submission is January 8, 2014*

Session 1: Globalization, Inequalities and Families

Session Organizer: Ken Chih-Yan Sun, Academia Sinica, Session Co-Organizer: Erin Rehel, Youngstown State University,   Economic and cultural globalization facilitates the cross-border circulation of goods, capital, information, imaginaries, and people that transforms the social and cultural landscape of many societies. However, the effects of globalization are not entirely positive. In many cases, globalization exacerbates existing inequalities and even creates new constraints with which many families are struggling. It also changes and challenges the ways family life is imagined, organized and negotiated. For example, the global restructuring of local economies has created harsh structural realities that push many people to foster new strategies to fulfill their family responsibilities, obligations, and commitments. The cross-border exchange of family ideals and ideas also prompts many spouses, parents, children, and kin members to rethink their relationships to one another. In this session, we invite submissions to address the relationships between globalization, inequalities and families. We are particularly interested in learning how institutional and individual actors negotiate and respond to opportunities and constraints that globalization brings to contemporary family life. Potential topics in this session include, but are not limited to, how the intersections of globalization and various systems of inequalities (such as social class, gender, race/ethnicity, nationality, sexuality and religion) influence intimate relationships, fertility rate, notions of parenthood, work-and-family dynamics, forms of reproductive labor, design of family policies, and transnational family arrangements in different corners of the world.  

Session 2: Families that Challenge and are Challenged by Our Times

Session Organizer: Mary Erdmans, Case Western University,   This session will address families that stretch the legal and conceptual boundaries of kinship. We are interested in papers that are theoretical in orientation as well as those that are empirical. We encourage papers on conventional challenges to the traditional concept of families (e.g., LGBTQ families, hetero unmarried cohabitators, blended families) as well as those that more radically push the boundaries of "family" (e.g., gang families, or “pet families” – i.e., childless couples with pets treated as family members). In addition, we are interested in papers about families challenged by our times to help us understand how kinship ties are maintained/altered/broken during this period of increasing inequality (e.g., homeless families), mass incarceration (e.g., families with one or both parents imprisoned or paroled), wars and revolutions (e.g., families in diaspora or refugee camps), and immigration (e.g., “Dreamer families” or immigrant families whose members have mixed residential status).  

Session 3. Love’s Labors Lost? Emotion Work in Hard Times

Session Organizer: Kai-Olaf Maiwald, Universität Osnabrück,   Changes in the economy put a strain on family life. Unemployment, prolonged working hours, dual careers, demand for flexibility – these make family life increasingly hard to manage logistically. But the spillover of a market logic into the realm of family requires another specific kind of work: maintaining boundaries, drawing lines between services provided by the market and the realm of family life. Normative changes affect the family as well. With a welcome dissolution of traditional norms comes a growing demand to “self-construct” one’s relationships. An awareness of growing fragility reinforces a need to answer constantly and practically questions like: Who are we, as a couple? What is family? What is kin? The work necessary for “doing family” in this sense is largely emotion work (to monitor, evaluate, and manage our feelings). This session begins with the assumption that to a large extent, family life is maintained by different forms of emotion work. It asks the following questions: What are the effects of changes in the terms of emotion work? What do they mean, in terms of compensation, demarcation, substitution and the like? Are there new patterns of emotion work emerging that cope with current structural changes? Where do we find the potential to transform macro structures?  

Session 4: Families OPEN session

Session Organizer: Karla B. Hackstaff, Northern Arizona University,   Submissions on any cutting edge topic related to families are invited.  

Session 5: Section on the Sociology of the Family Roundtables

Session Organizer: Amanda Miller, University of Indianapolis,   *Roundtables will be 1-hour in length; followed by the Section’s 40-minute business meeting.