Famiglia, identità e rapporti tra le generazioni
Considering the diverse family structures which have existed in the past and which exist in the present in different cultural contexts, a central issue in family research is to clarify what is variant and what is invariant about family identity. How can we define the family? Of what does the identity of a family consist? Many scholars consider the family as a primary group, which shares a particular history of bonds and, in turn, generates future bonds. The aim of this chapter is to clarify the processes through which families construct identities, both within the family group and in relation to the external world. We propose that intergenerational connectedness and separateness play a vital role in the construction of the identities of individual family members, of the family as a group, and of the family in relation to society. We focus especially on the development of adult identity, analysing the role of the previous generation in this process.