Two central questions have motivated this investigation. First, do the nature and extent of change in family ties in these settings support the “developmental paradigm,” whereby a pre-existing dominant, patriarchical, and extended family system yields to a nuclear-family structure that embraces individualism and egalitarian generational (husband/wife) and intergenerational (parents/children) ties? Second, to what extent have ideational forces also shaped family transitions in the three countries under study?