Topic 6: Family diversity and the life course (notes)

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  • Family diversity and the life course
    • Modernism and the nuclear family
      • The new right
        • Conservative and anti-feminist perspective
        • Opposed to family diversity
        • Only one correct and normal family
          • Nuclear family
        • Lone-parent families = unnatural and harmful
        • Disapprove women going out to work
        • Marriage = essential
        • Benefits
          • Undermine the traditional family by discouraging men from working
          • 'Dependency culture'
        • Criticisms
          • Feminists
            • OAKLEY
              • Wrongly assume the husband and wives roles
            • Nuclear family = patriarchal depression
          • Little evidence that lone-parents are part of a 'dependency culture'
      • CHESTER: Neo-conventional family
        • Increased family diversity in recent years
        • The move away from the nuclear family
        • Dual-earner family
        • WILLMOTT AND YOUNG
          • Symmetrical family
        • Most people choose to live in alternative families
        • Evidence
          • Most people live in families headed by a married couple
          • Divorcees re-marry
          • Cohabitation has increased
          • Births outside marriage have increased
        • He still sees the nuclear family has being dominant
      • RAPOPRTS: Five types of family diversity
        • Organisational
          • Different family roles
          • Joint-conjugal roles
          • Dual earners
        • Cultural
          • Different ethic groups have different structures
            • Asian families - extened
        • Social class
          • Income differences
        • Life-stage
          • Differ according to their life stages
            • Widowers
            • Newly weds
            • Children who have left home
        • Generational
          • Untitled
    • Postmodernity and the life course
      • Emphasis the nuclear family and the dominant type
        • Modernists
      • Ignore two factors
        • Individuals make choices about their family life and relationships
        • Greater choice about personal relationships
      • Life course analysis
        • Has two strengths
          • Focuses on what family members think is important
          • Suitable for studying families in today's society
        • Focuses on meanings people give to certain choices and experiences
      • Family practices
        • Influenced by beliefs
        • Allows us to  see why conflict may occur within families
        • MORGAN
          • How er construct our life course and relationships
          • "Closer to the realities of everyday experiences"
          • The family is more fragmented
            • Family = clear cut
        • Functionalism
          • Family = clear cut
      • Family diversity
        • CHEAL
          • We no longer  live in a modern world
          • Family has entered a new chaotic, postmodern stage
        • Advantages and disadvantages
          • Greater freedom to individuals
          • Greater risk of instability
      • GIDDENS: Choice and equality
        • Contraception
        • Women have gained independence
      • BECK: 'risk society' and the negotiated family
        • Tradition has less of an influence
        • Why the patriarchal family has been undermined
          • Greater gender equality
            • Challenges male domination
            • Women expect equality in work and marriage
          • Greater individualism
            • Actions are influenced by peoples interests not by what other people feel is right
      • STAEY: Divorce extended family
        • Greater choice has benefited women
        • Free women from patriarchal oppression
      • WEEKS: The growing acceptance of diversity
        • Shift since the 50s
        • Church have less of an infulence
        • Still are fairly traditional
        • Sees the new right as fighting a loosing battle
      • Two views in diversity
        • For
          • Post modernists
            • Freedom to choose
          • Feminists
            • Steering away from a patriarchal family
        • Against
          • The New Right
            • Nuclear family = best
  • Differ according to their life stages
    • Widowers
    • Newly weds
    • Children who have left home

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