What’s the story? Family demography at the end of progress

I was on an invited panel at the 2022 Population Association of American conference, organized by Lingxin Hao and including Frances Goldscheider, Wendy Manning, and Andrew Cherlin. The panel was titled, “Family Demography: Where is it now? Where Should It be Going?”

My talk was, “What’s the story? Family demography at the end of progress.” I’ve now edited the transcript of the talk and added references, to make it a little paper, which you can read on SocArXiv here.

Here’s the abstract:

I argue against a perception of normal modernity that is on some kind of track that we can try to get a handle on while we work around distractions like a pandemic, climate change, diverging and growing inequality, the centrifugal tendency of identities to be fragmenting, and policy incoherence. Instead, I suggest doing family demography in light of disasters, inequalities, identities, and policies as messy and coherent, unpredictable features of society – not as bugs in the ointment of modern progress.

There is a video of the presentation here.

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