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From Publishers Weekly
According to Ahern, a freelance writer, and Bailey, a psychology professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, our mobile society, the high divorce rate and the prevalence of childhood traumas have all contributed to the fragmentation of nuclear and extended biological families. Because kinship is such a basic human need, the authors argue that alternatives to traditional families have evolved to satisfy individuals' desire for community. Examined here, in this occasionally repetitive text punctuated by pop-psych terminology, are various forms of "international families," including strong, enduring friendships, close bonds among members of organized groups and connections forged on the Internet between people who never see each other (cyberfamilies). Ahern also discusses her interesting personal experience when, as a poor white child, she found love and acceptance among black neighbors. She feels that African Americans have preserved an extended kinship system that relies, in part, on providing multiple caregivers for children.