Family policy paradoxes

Gender equality and labour market regulation in Sweden, 1930-2010

By Åsa Lundqvist


Jan 26, 2011

Page count

168 pages




240 x 172 mm


Policy Press
Family policy paradoxes

Family policy paradoxes examines the political regulation of the family in Sweden between 1930 and today. It draws attention to the political attempts to create a 'modern family' and the aspiration to regulate the family and establish gender equality, thereby shedding light on ongoing policy processes within Europe and how these can be understood in the light of a particular political experience.

The book is valuable for researchers, lecturers, undergraduate and graduate students who study gender, gender equality and welfare state development in gender studies, sociology, social and public policy, social work, politics and social/contemporary history

"This is a well-researched and thought-provoking book." Citizen's Income Trust Newsletter

"This important book provides a unique insight in the 'path dependent'

evolution of Swedish family and gender equality policy from the 1930s to 2010. The critical analysis of the tensions, paradoxes and visions in the Swedish family model raises more general questions about policy learning across Europe and about family policies as potential vehicles for prosperity and sustainable growth." Professor Birte Siim, Department of Culture and Global Studies, University of Aalborg, Denmark

"In Family Policy Paradoxes, Åsa Lundqvist offers a rich, multifaceted analysis of Sweden's grand family policy experiment, highlighting visions, drivers and actors of social democratic family policies from the 1930s into the 2000s." Arnlaug Leira, Professor of Sociology, University of Oslo

"By opening up the complexities and contradictions of Swedish family policy, this book offers a thought-provoking and historically informed analysis of the significance of gender equality ideals in political struggles to regulate family life and their combined effects on gender relations in the home and the workplace." Janet Fink, Senior Lecturer in Social Policy, The Open University

Åsa Lundqvist is Associate Professor and Senior Lecturer in the Department of Sociology at Lund University, Sweden. Her research interests include feminist analysis of the history of the welfare state and welfare policies, especially the intersectional relation between labour market regulation and social and family policies.

Introduction: understanding the political regulation of the family; Mapping, evaluating and formulating modern family life; The family in the Swedish model; Towards gender-neutral ideals and gender equality politics; Family policy in the age of neoliberalism; Family policy and gender equality in the new millennium; Conclusion: family policy paradoxes.