Working Mothers. The family of today reflects this basic economic insecurity. The traditional role of the husband and father, as head of the household and its chief support, is jeopardized. His role in relationship to his children has been displaced, for not only have the hereditary occupations disappeared but new ones which might give him status have not replaced them. Furthermore, the father's role in the informal education of his sons is now being performed by the formal educational system of the white man's culture. The role of the mother has likewise changed. More and more she has assumed responsibility for the partial support of the family as well as for the maintenance of the home and care of the children. The employment of young women on NYA and of older women on WPA projects during the 1930's and early 1940's contributed to this changing role. More recently the employment of women in defense work and in other employment away from the reservations has made for greater independence on the part of women and for further disintegration of the family.
The traditional family controls of the children are no longer effective. Again new standards have not replaced them. The increasing number of broken homes, the increasing number of illegitimate births, and the increasing number of juvenile delinquents all reflect this family disorganization. The passivity with which the Indian has accepted this situation may be ascribed to a fear of the white man's authority, to the presence of an unsatisfactory environment still characterized by cultural, economic, and social deprivations, and to suspicion of the dominant group which, though meaning well, has not been too understanding of the Indian's position. . . .
Douglas G. Marshall
[Most immigrants who came to the United States after 1880 made their homes in cities. Urban life put many pressures on them to assimilate. Certainly by the third generation acculturation and assimilation were fairly complete. But the small proportion who immigrated to rural areas, even in the period before 1880, were able to keep intact