Families and Households

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  • Created by: Hannah B
  • Created on: 02-05-14 20:08
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  • Families and Households
    • The role of the family in society
      • Family types
        • Nuclear family
        • Extended family
        • Single parent family
        • Reconstituted family
      • Functionalist view
        • institutions are essential in society
        • Murdock's 4 functions of the family
          • Sexual
          • Reproductive
          • Economic
          • Educational
        • Parson's two functions of the family
          • Primary socialisation
          • Stabilisation of adult roles
      • Marxist view
        • Family benefits the bourgeoisie and the economy
        • Engels - wealth is kept within the bourgeoisie through inheritance
        • Zaretsky - family is where the proletariat can have control (when the working man got home, he was in charge)
        • The family is a unit of consumption
      • Feminist view
        • Marxist
          • Ansley - women are "takers of s***"
        • Radical
          • Delphy & Leonard - women do the work and men get the benefits
        • Liberal
          • social change is possible
      • New Right
        • Murray - welfare benefits are too high and create a culture of dependancy
        • social policies undermine the family
    • Family Diversity
      • Rapoport and Rapoport (1982)
        • organisational diversity
        • cultural diversity
        • class diversity
        • life - course diversity
        • cohort diversity
      • ethnicity
        • whites/afro-caribbeans most likely to be divorced
        • afro-caribbean most likely to be single parent families
        • south asian families are most likely to be extended
      • class
        • middle class areas in the uk have a higher proportion of nuclear families
        • working class areas more likely to have a higher proportion of lone-parent households
      • rise of cohabitation
        • in 2001 a quarter of all non-married adults ages 16-59 were cohabiting
      • rise in divorce rates
        • why?
          • more available
          • more socially acceptable
          • women are less financially dependent on husbands
          • marriage is less supported by the state
      • people are having fewer chldren and having them later in life
        • contraception more readily available
        • women want successful working lives rather than children
      • new technologies = new family structures
        • IVF
        • fertility treatments
      • New Right
        • family diversity is due to a decline in traditional values
        • female headed families/lack of male role model = rise in crime rates
      • functionalists
        • growth in diversity is exaggerated
        • Chester (1985) - there has been some growth in diversity, but nuclear families are still dominant
      • postmodernists
        • diversity is the new norm
        • relationships are created to suit peoples needs
    • Changes in family structure
      • Industrialisation changed family structure
        • Pre-industrial society: the extended family is most common
        • Industrial society: nuclear family becomes dominant
      • Functionalists
        • industrialisation changed family functions
        • Parsons - the nuclear family became dominant because it is the best fit for industrial society
      • Willmott and Young
        • The famiy has developed in 3 stages
          • 1 - Pre-industrial: family works together as economic production unit
          • 2 - Early industrial: extended family is broken up as individuals leave home to work
          • 3 - Privatised Nuclear: family based on consumption and not production. INTRODUCTION OF THE SYMMETRICAL FAMILY.
      • Social policy
        • put in place to influence family structure
        • The Welfare State supported families through benefits, public housing, free health care and family allowances
        • Conservative government (Margaret Thatcher)
          • wanted to free society from the influence of the state
          • introduced means testing
          • protect traditional family
            • Child Support Agency
            • Children Act
            • divorce is more difficult
        • New Labour (Tony Blair)
          • third way
          • aware of diversity
            • civil partnerships introduced
            • cohabiting couples could legally adopt
        • Feminists
          • saw the social policies as sexists and exploitative by reinforcing the idea that the woman was the primary carer
        • Marxists
          • social policy reinforces social class differences
          • cutting benefits to the poor only makes them poorer
    • The roles within the family
      • Elizabeth Bott - conjugal roles
        • segregated - husbands and wives lead separate lives with clear responsibilities within the family. Man = instrumental role, breadwinner. Female = expressive role, emotional work, childcare and cooking.
        • Willmott and Young - carried out strudy and predicted joint conjugal roles would be the norm in the future
          • Oakley - pointed out this study only required men to do a few household tasks to be classed as joint roles
      • conjugal roles are still unequal
        • double burden (Oakley) women take on paid work and keep traditional responsibilities
        • triple shift - housework, paid work and emotional work
        • social construction of the housewife (Oakley)
      • decision making
        • Edgell interviewed middle class couples  and found that men had decision making control over things both the husband and wife found important but women had control over minor decisions
        • Pahl - husband controlled pooling was most common form of financial management
      • explanations for inequality
        • functionalist
          • men and women perform different tasks because it is the most effective for a smooth running society
        • marxist
          • women need to care for working men to keep them health for their jobs
        • feminist
          • unequal to feed into the patriarchal society
      • domestic violence
        • Dobash and Dobash - domestic violence isn't usually recorded by police
        • radical feminists see it as a way for men to control women
    • Childhood
      • Childhood is partly a social construct
        • isn't the ame everywhere in the world
      • Aries (1962) looked at paintings and said that in medieval society children were just mini-adults
      • children are protected
        • laws limit sexual behaviour, access to alcohol and tobacco and the amount of paid work they can perform
        • Children Act 1989
        • NSPCC
      • functionalists
        • position of children is a sign of progress
      • child liberationalists
        • society oppresses children
        • Gittins (1985)  age patriarchy
      • Postman (1994) childhood is dissapearing
    • Household: a group of people who live together who may or may not be related
    • Family: a household where the people living together are related

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