Nuclear family- functionalism

  • Created by: aliced_19
  • Created on: 16-03-17 15:28
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  • Murdock- The family is a universal institution, 4 functions of nuclear family:  sexual, economic, educational, reproductive
    • Nuclear family- functionalism
      • Parsons- claims that the modern nuclear family retains two important functions: the primary socialisation of children and the stabilisation of adult personalities.WARM BATH THEORY. nuclear family more geographically mobile, complementary roles.
        • CRITICISMS-idealising the family and presenting a simplistic explanation of role to society. Based  on american middle class families.Fails to explore alternatives to family. Can not be applied to modern family as nuclear family no longer more common.
      • Popenoe- biological necessities that underlie the way families are organised. Men and women biologically suited to their roles e.g women suited to looking after children. He implies some types of families are less functional than others lead to damaged children.
      • Fletcher- believes the family has developed new functions such as acting as a unit of consumption where goods and services are bought by families rather than as a unit of production.
      • OVERALL EVALUATION-functionalsit paint a picture of happy families and ignore conflict. Ignore diversity of family life in industrial society. No reference to lone parent families, cohabiting or reconstituted. Give insufficient attention to dysfunctions of the family and harmful effects.
    • CRITICISM- Morgan: murdock does not state to what extent these basic functions are linked with the institution of the nuclear family. ignores conflict.


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