chapter  1
20 Pages

The New Fathering Movement

WithRonald F. Levant, David J. Wimer

This chapter takes a recent historical perspective and examines the emergence of the new father role, also known as the involved or nurturing father, which began around 1975 in the United States and became prominent on the national scene in the 1980s. The first author was a participant in the movement that created this new area of research and clinical practice. Thus, we will discuss this movement, in part from the first author’s own experiences that include serving as the Director of the Boston University Fatherhood Project from 1983 to 1988. We will discuss the social changes in the 1960s and 1970s that led to the new father role. We will also consider data on paid work, family work, and free time that suggest that men have not fully adopted the new father role, and data on changes in divorce patterns that suggest there may continue to be a “crisis of connection” between men and women. Finally, we will consider how counselors have in the past and might in the future address these matters.