An ethnographic study of an early-childhood intervention program in 18 neighborhoods in Syracuse ( New York) offered 156 families participation in home visit and neighborhood group activities to provide social support in parenting their preschool children, and to enhance the children's cognitive and social development. Both neighborhood mobilization (group activity) and home-visit utilization were examined in light of rationalchoice, Marxist and neo-Marxist, and pluralistic theories of urban life. Low levels of participation typified most families. Suburban residence, race, strong ethnic and other pre-existent social networks, as well as higher levels of education and mother's part-time work outside the home were associated with participation. Economic theories of mobilization were generally not supported by the data, though there was some evidence for pluralistic urban political theory. Systemic power, residential mobility, urban decline, and the strategies adopted by urban leaders to counter the decline were examined and shown to impact neighborhood mobilization and program participation generally. Policy issues discussed included the potential consequences of the trends analyzed in their effects on the family and political structure of cities in the future.____________________
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Publication information: Book title: Urban Neighborhoods:Research and Policy. Contributors: Ralph B. Taylor - Editor. Publisher: Praeger. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1986. Page number: 250.
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