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This core textbook is intended to provide a focused, research-based, exciting introduction to the study of the family. The book departs from the typical introductory text in three ways. First, a fundamental focus will be on two dimensions of change-change over the life course of individuals and change over historical time. There is tendency in many family texts to discuss features of family life in rather static terms despite its inherently dynamic nature. Another key emphasis in this book will be on examining marriage, parenting, or intergenerational relationships as they change over the life course. Three reoccurring questions will structure much of the substantive material: (a) What have been the changes? (b) Why have they happened? (c) What are the consequences?