The Complex Nature of Family Conflict: Power, Effectiveness, and Context

The Complex Nature of Family Conflict: Power, Effectiveness, and Context

The Complex Nature of Family Conflict: Power, Effectiveness, and Context

The Complex Nature of Family Conflict: Power, Effectiveness, and Contexts

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Référence bibliographique [12715]

Della Porta, Sandra. 2013. «The Complex Nature of Family Conflict: Power, Effectiveness, and Context». Thèse de doctorat, Montréal, Université Concordia, Département des sciences de l’éducation.

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1. Objectifs


Intentions :
«[T]his set of studies center around family members’ use of power in polyadic family conflict during early childhood. Specifically, three manuscripts focus on (a) family members’ use of power tactics as they vary by individual and relationship contexts, (b) power effectiveness as it is assessed by two means, microscopically (i.e., conflict process) and macroscopically (i.e., win-lose outcome), and (c) conflict context variables, including conflict role, topic, and social domain.» (p. iii)

Questions/Hypothèses :
In the first study «[t]he following research questions were posed: (a) What type of power is used most often in polyadic family conflict? (b) Does power use vary by family role (i.e., parent-child), and by age/birth order and gender when comparing older and younger siblings? (c) Does use of power vary by relationship (i.e., parent-child, sibling) or actor-partner combination (i.e., parent to child, child to parent, or child to child)?» (p. 25-26) In the second study, «the following hypotheses were posited: (a) family members will be more effective using coercion and simple and elaborated information than other types of power (Tesla & Dunn, 1992); (b) parents will be more effective in their use of power than children; (c) considering family status, parents will be more effective with coercive and simple and elaborated information, while children will be more effective in their use of legitimate power; (d) accounting for birth order, siblings will not differ in their effective use of power, regardless of the type of power; (e) older siblings will be more effective in their use of expert and elaborated information power than younger siblings and younger siblings will be more effective in their use of reward power and simple information than older siblings». (p. 60) In the third study, «[t]he following guiding questions […] were posed. First, do certain family members take on different roles in polyadic conflict sequences (i.e., initiator, combatant, additional party)? Second, what are the topics that start a family conflict? […] Third, what is the most common social domain referred to by parents and children in polyadic conflict? […] Fourth, do references to social domains vary by actor and topic? […] Finally, do parents, older siblings and younger siblings argue their case with different power resources in relation to certain social domain conflicts?» (p. 100)

2. Méthode


Échantillon/Matériau :
«In the present set of studies, the sample consisted of 210 polyadic family conflict sequences from 35/39 families consisting of two siblings, approximately 4- and 6-years of age, and their parents.» (p. iii)

Type de traitement des données :
Analyse statistique

3. Résumé


In the first study, «[w]e found that (a) coercive power was used more from parent to child and child to sibling than child to parent, (b) reward power was use more from child to sibling and to parent than from parent to child, (c) legitimate, simple information, and questioning power were used more from parent to child than other actor-target combinations, and (d) elaborated information power was used more from parent to child and child to parent than between siblings. [In the second study,] parents were more effective in their use of power than older and younger siblings using both methods of assessment. […] Further, by observing actor moves, simple information was more effective for parents than younger siblings; yet when comparing family role, parents were more effective than children combined. […] Findings [of the third study] indicated that older children were more likely to start a conflict as either the initiator or the combatant, while the younger sibling was equally likely to enter a conflict in three different roles (i.e., initiator, combatant, or additional party).» (p. 128-132)