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Faculty

Office

Box 90029
Durham, NC 27708-0088
102-D Allen Bldg
Durham, NC 27708

Phone

(919) 668-2728

Links

Social

Linda Burton
Director of the Center for Child and Family Policy
James B. Duke Professor of Sociology
Professor of Sociology
Senior Fellow in the Center forStudy of Aging
Faculty Research Scholar of DuPRI's Population Research Center
Affiliate of the Center for Biobehavioral Health Disparities Research
Affiliate of the Center for Child and Family Policy

Areas of Expertise

Education

Ph.D., University of Southern California (1985)
M.S., University of Southern California (1982)
B.S., University of Southern California (1978)

Bio

My program of research is conceptually grounded in life course, developmental, and ecological perspectives and focuses on three themes concerning the lives of America's poorest urban, small town, and rural families: (1) intergenerational family structures, processes, and role transitions; (2) the meaning of context and place in the daily lives of families; and, (3) childhood adultification and the accelerated life course. My methodological approach to exploring these issues is comparative, longitudinal, and multi-method. The comparative dimension of my research comprises in-depth within group analysis of low income African American, White, and, Hispanic/Latino families, as well as systematic examinations of similarities and differences across groups. I employ longitudinal designs in my studies to identify distinct and often nuanced contextual and ethnic/racial features of development that shape the family structures, processes (e.g., intergenerational care-giving) and life course transitions (e.g., grandparenthood, marriage) families experience over time. I am principally an ethnographer, but integrate survey and geographic and spatial analysis in my work. I was one of six principal investigators involved in an multisite, multi-method collaborative study of the impact of welfare reform on families and children (Welfare, Children, and Families: A Three-City Study). I directed the ethnographic component of the Three-City Study and was also principal investigator of an ethnographic study of rural poverty and child development (The Family Life Project).