Human Development and Family Studies

Andrea Hunter, Ph.D.

Research Interests

The major aims of my research are to explore the linkages between the life course, families, and social structure, and to broaden research on African Americans, especially families. I have sought to meet these aims by (a) asking fundamental questions about the family and the interconnected lives of its members, and (b) reframing old questions and expanding interpretations of aspects of black family life that have defined the field of black family studies.  Specifically, my research focuses on three major areas: (1) variations in the structure and social organization of families and social networks, and their effects on individuals’ roles, behavior, and well-being across the life span; (2) constructions of gender and the ways in which gender affects family roles and life course trajectories, and (3) family history, the life course, and social change.  Underlying these research foci is an interest in the social, economic, and cultural transformations affecting African American families.  My approach is interdisciplinary, I draw primarily on life course theory and feminist perspectives, and I use a variety of methodological approaches (quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-method) in my research.

Recent Selected Publications

  1. Hunter, A.G. & Stewart, A. J. (Eds.). (June 2015). Psychology, History and Social Justice: The Social Past in the Personal Present [Special issue]. Journal of Social Issues, 71 (2), 219-439. doi:27.0018/99-36me0w
  2. Friend, C. A., Hunter, A. G., & Fletcher, A. C. (in press) Parental racial socialization and the academic achievement of African American children: A cultural-ecological approach. Journal of African American Studies
  3. Hunter, A.G., Friend, C. A., Williams-Wheeler, M. & Fletcher, A. C. (in press) Navigating our patchwork heritage: Race, class, and religious differences in the social networks of children and their parents. Youth & Society
  4. Hunter, A. G., & Johnson, D. J. (in press). A certain kind of vision: Revealing structure, process, and meanings in African American families. In J. Jackson, C. H. Caldwell, & S. Sellers (Eds.). Social Science Research in Black Populations. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press.
  5. Henderson, T.L., Hunter, A. G., Hildreth, G. O. (2010). Outsiders within the academy:Strategies for resistance and mentoring African American women. Michigan Family Review, 14, 28 – 41.
  6. Murphy, S. Y., Hunter, A. G., & Johnson, D. J. (2008). Transforming caregiving: African American custodial grandmothers and the child welfare system. Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, 35, 67-89.
  7. Fletcher, A. C., Bridges, T. L., & Hunter, A.G.  (2007). Parental involvement in children’s friendships:  Race, class, and friendship context. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 69, 1135-1149.
  8. Hunter, A. G., Friend, C. F., Murphy, S. Y., Rollins, A., Williams-Wheeler, M. & Laughinghouse, J.  (2006). Loss, survival, and redemption: African American male youth’s reflections on life without fathers, manhood, and coming of age. Youth & Society, 37, 423–452.
  9. Hunter, A. G. (2006). Teaching classics in family studies: E. Franklin Frazier’s The Negro Family in the United States.  Family Relations, 55, 80-92.
  10. Fletcher, A. C., Hunter, A. G., & Eanes, A. Y. (2006). Links between social network closure and child well-being: The organizing roles of race and friendship context. Developmental Psychology, 42, 1057-1068.
  11. Hunter, A. G. (2002).  (Re)envisioning cohabitation: A commentary on race, history, and culture. In A. Booth & A. Crouter (Eds.) Just living together: Implications of cohabitation for families, children and social policy (pp. 41 - 52).  Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  12. Hunter, A. G. (2001). The other breadwinners: The mobilization of secondary wage earners in early twentieth-century black families.  The History of the Family: An International Quarterly, 6, 69–94.