New family arrangements: conceptions about paternity, parenthood and gender relations in female heads of households

Juliana Perucchi Aline Maiochi Beirão About the authors

The number of households headed by women is growing in Brazil. This article is the result of a research that investigated the conceptions that female heads of households have about paternity. The data was gathered through semi-structured interviews with women, mothers, who were solely in charge of household income. The interviews were later submitted to content analysis. The results show that the conceptions that these women have about paternity are crossed by their personal experiences and the experiences that have marked their family trajectory. These notions contemplate the themes of parenthood and gender relations. The participative and present father, not only as a supplier, but, basically, as an educator, is praised in their conceptions. Those conceptions are constructed from the daily tasks they carry out, which they consider as being the functions of both fathers and mothers, but which they execute concomitantly.

paternity; parenthood; female heads of households

Departamento de Psicologia da Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro Rua Marquês de São Vicente, 225 - Gávea, 22453-900 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ, Tel.: (55 21) 3527-1185 / 3527-1186, Fax: (55 21) 3527-1187 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil