chapter  3
349 Pages

Economic Deprivation and Family Status

ByGlen H. Elder

This chapter explores the antecedent conditions and the consequences of this drastic loss for the family, with primary emphasis on change in family position, strategies of economic maintenance, and the psychological response of parents. A number of options and issues were considered in constructing a suitable measure of economic deprivation. The chapter discusses the matters, describes the index of economic deprivation, and investigates some correlates of family hardship in the worklife of the Oakland fathers. At least two factors are involved in the determination of economic deprivation and its impact: the degree of loss or change, and the context in which it occurs. The degree of variation in economic loss among families in the Oakland sample disputes a popular assumption that economic hardship in the Depression was a pervasive experience which placed American families in a common situation of shared misfortune.