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Abstracts, Journal issues, NORMA 1.2

Self-evident, unchanging, and universal? Deconstructing interpretations of the history of fatherhood

Ilana Aalto

The article deals with interpretations on the history of fatherhood presented from two sources: recent Finnish research on fatherhood and autobiographical writings on fatherhood that were written by seven Finnish men born between 1910–1930. It is suggested in the article that the history of fatherhood is repeatedly represented in a form of a simplified transformation story, in which the static and monolithic model of “traditional” fatherhood is juxtaposed with modern, flexible, and multiple ways of fathering. The changes that have taken place in the women’s position and, consequently, in gendered parenting models since 1960s are seen as a historical rupture between the past and present fatherhoods. The article proposes the research employs this kind of historical representation in order to promote shared parenting as the normative model of the present day parenthood.

Keywords
change, fatherhood, fatherhood studies, gender, history of fatherhood, historiography, parenthood

NORMA: Nordic Journal for Masculinity Studies 1(2), 150-164

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