The American Family: Discovering the Values That Make Us Strong

Dan Quayle, Author, Diane Medved, With HarperCollins Publishers $25 (0p) ISBN 978-0-06-017378-4
What makes some families stick together? Former Vice-President Quayle (Standing Firm), who often speaks on family values, identifies a core of traits-including respect, discipline, attentiveness, religious commitment, TV curtailment and parents' involvement in children's schooling-as contributors to the cohesiveness of the five diverse American families he extensively interviewed with clinical psychologist Medved (The Case Against Divorce). Writing in the first person, Quayle profiles a white couple with three children in rural Virginia who operate a country inn; a middle-class African American couple in Chicago whose extended family helps care for their two kids; a single white mother from Indianapolis who left her cheating husband and now raises their five children herself. We also meet a Hispanic family of East Los Angeles whose son, just out of college, survived a car accident but suffered severe head injuries requiring years of rehabilitative therapy and a Hawaiian couple, multimillionaire entrepreneurs, with two adopted daughters, one Filipino Japanese, one black. (Only one of the families supported the Bush/Quayle ticket.) At the end of each profile, Quayle draws lessons-often preachy or obvious (pray together, try to find good in a negative situation), sometimes insightful (cultivate letter writing, force your children to talk about their day)-from their patterns of interaction. Quayle concludes, in an implicit rebuke to Hillary Clinton, that the ""village"" that raises a child should be the home, not government. His proposed pro-family policies include increased tax breaks for families; an overhaul of permissive ""no-fault"" divorce laws; an (unspecified) way to promote adoption over abortion; and a fight against crime, centered on more prisons for violent criminals. Photos not seen by PW. $200,000 ad/promo; author tour. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1996
Release date: 04/01/1996
Hardcover - 978-0-06-017427-9
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-694-51643-8
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-06-092810-0
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7861-0982-1
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