Men, poverty & lifetimes of care

  • Father and baby

Despite a shift in expectations about men’s increased involvement in care and family life, particularly in fatherhood, there is very little evidence about men’s diverse care responsibilities; the meanings, experiences and patterns of providing care over time; or how men might be best supported with those responsibilities when they are living on a low-income

Photo credit: michaelstothard

Previous research evidence indicates that the dual imperative for men to both earn and care can be particularly problematic for working-class fathers, who struggle to fulfil these norms. Yet such assumptions fail to acknowledge that men are embedded in a wider network of interdependencies and engage in numerous care roles across the life course.

The main aim of the ‘Men, Poverty and Lifetimes of Care’ study is to explore the dynamics of continuity and change in men’s care responsibilities when living on a low-income. This study employs a qualitative longitudinal methodology to explore men’s care responsibilities in low-income families, capturing continuities and change over the life course and across households. The design of this project was based on a qualitative secondary analysis of archived data in the Timescapes Archive (see Tarrant, 2016). I analysed the Following Young Fathers dataset (focusing on the lived experiences of young fatherhood) and the Intergenerational Exchange dataset (focusing on low-income midlife grandparents) to explore intergenerational interdependencies in low-income families, as well as men’s care practices.

Project Lead

Dr Anna Tarrant, School of Social & Political Sciences


The Leverhulme Trust 2014-2016 

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