Dialogue and Power in Parent-Child Communication

Megan K. Foley


Michelle MILLER-DAY (2004) provides an in-depth account of the negotiation of power in intergenerational maternal relationships. She provides a useful alternative to socialization and compliance-gaining perspectives on social influence between parents and children, which have limited formulations of children's agency. She proposes that despite their different statuses in the family hierarchy, both mothers and daughters experience a dialectical tension between power and powerlessness in communicative transactions. MILLER-DAY develops a grounded theory of necessary convergence, a symbolic process in which daughters—both powerfully and powerlessly—adopt their mothers' interpretations in order to maintain their relationship. This theory of necessary convergence can be productively supplemented by theorizations of dialogic multivocality, enabling this work's potentially broad transferability.
URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0602120


dialogue; social influence; family; resistance; compliance; grandmother; mother; daughter; relationship; power

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-7.2.97

Copyright (c) 2006 Megan K. Foley

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