traditional family and changing life course

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  • The traditional family, and the changing life course
    • Life course: Refers to the sequence of significant events individuals experience, choices they make
      • In the Past: Strongly influenced by traditional social norms and customs
      • Transition from childhood to adulthood-events: marriage, parenthood, divorce and retirement
      • Allan&Crow (2011)- 20th century to 1960's fairly standard life course, following a set sequence of events,age related
      • Levin(2004)-LC"compulsory",social norms. Family unit= socially approved format- "cereal packet family"
      • Lewis (2011)- Individuals have greater freedom of choice in personal behaviour
      • May(2011)- Personal relationships take on diverse forms
    • THE INDIVIDUALISATION THESIS: The process whereby traditional social relationships, roles& beliefs lose their influence
      • Chambers (2012)-  Central reason for key changes in ideas (love, commitment& family decline
      • Beck-Gernsheim (2002)- Process whereby traditional social relationship, values= lose influence
        • Traditional rules governing peoples lives have weakened, become more fluid, unclear& uncertain
          • People have more personal choices, more options
      • Bauman (2003)-  World of growing * * human bonds are weak
      • Beck- Gernsheim (2002)- Underlying cause of growing * * lie in developments in modern medicine
    • CONFLUENT LOVE: Active&unconditional love, emotional intimacy
      • Beck- Gernsheim- Love (rather than pratical necessity)now guides peoples approaches to relationship
      • Giddens (1993)- Changing landscape of love as a move away from what he calls "romantic love"
        • Links * * to "pure relationship"- couple who stay together because they choose to- meets their emotional& sexual needs
          • Chambers (2012)- pure relationships are not "forever"- do not involve long term commitment
      • Beck (1995)-Love is the only place where people can truly  find themselves
      • Giddens (2013)- "People marry for the sake of love,divorce for the sake of love and engage in an endless cycle of hoping, regretting and trying again"
      • Growth of * *suggest lies behind the growing diversity of families/households & new forms of personal relationships
    • Criticisms of theories:
      • Smart (2007)- individualisation thesis exaggerates extent of family decline
      • People still influenced in choice, factors: social class, gender& ethnicity
      • Chambers (2012)-  "cereal packet family"- most people still committed to values


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