Correlates of parenting for mothers and fathers from English and Indian backgrounds

Naama Atzaba-Poria, Alison Pike

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objective: Guided by Bronfenbrenner's ecological model, we examined relations between child characteristics and contextual factors and mothering and fathering in ethnic minority and majority samples within Great Britain. Design. 125 families (59 English and 66 of Indian origin) with 81/2-year-old children participated. Parental warmth and use of harsh discipline were rated from home observations and semi-structured interviews. Mothers and fathers completed questionnaires regarding children's negative emotionality as well as reports of their marital satisfaction, job spillover, and a demographic questionnaire for the assessment of socioeconomic status (SES). Results: Children's negative emotionality was negatively linked to parental warmth and positively linked to parental use of harsh discipline. Mothers tend to be warmer to girls than to boys. At the contextual level, marital relationship quality is negatively associated with maternal and paternal use of discipline, and SES is positively linked to parental warmth. SES provides unique prediction of paternal warmth. Elevated levels of negative job spillover and lower levels of SES are linked to increased use of harsh discipline only for the English fathers, whereas paternal marital satisfaction is negatively related to paternal use of discipline only for the Indian fathers. Conclusion: Some correlates are similar, but parenting in middle childhood also varies for mothers and fathers as well as for parents from different cultural groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-40
Number of pages24
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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