Family and the Life Course

A family drawn on four fingers.

Faculty and students who work in this area aim to understand the interplay between aging and the life course, family relationships, and changing social structures. A key question in this area is how broader structures of inequality (e.g. race, class, gender, period, place) shape how our individual and interpersonal lives play out. Through diverse methods, including in-depth interviewing, comparative, and quantitative approaches, scholars in this area both describe and explain these relationships, and their work yields implications for public policy, professional practice, and individual well-being. Courses and seminars in this area include families and inequality, families and public policy, social policies for aging societies, families and crime, sociology of death and dying, and life course sociology, among others.