Some basic notes on why divore is on the increase

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  • Created on: 25-05-10 15:49
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Divorce is on the increase, but why?
5 explanations of why divorce is on the increase
1) Changes in the law
Equalising grounds for divorce makes it easier to obtain for both sexes
Widening the grounds of divorce
Divorce made cheaper, so women who may have been staying in a
marriage due to the cost of divorce can now also file for it.
2) Decline in stigma and changing attitudes
Being divorced used to be seen as a negative label, but now has become
more socially acceptable. It is seen as a normal thing now. Used to be
seen as shameful to be divorced but now is just seen as an unfortunate
3) Rising Expectations of marriage
Marriage is based on the idea of "Romantic love". Marriage seen as
based solely on love now, and so if love is not fulfilled then there is no
justification to stay married. People are no longer willing to stay in
empty shells marriages, therefore divorce rates will go up as people
search for Mr/Miss Right.
4) Secularisation
This is decline in religion influence. Church attendance rates are dropping.
People are becoming less influenced by religious teachings, and
therefore will not keep in mind religious views on divorce before getting
5) Changing position of women
Women are working more. No longer financially dependent on men, this
may have been keeping them in a marriage in the past.
Girls are doing better in education now, than in the past therefore are
going on to get higher paid jobs. This means again women are becoming
less financially dependent on men, so can divorce if their needs are not
fulfilled as money is no longer an issue.
Increased welfare benefits means that women are free to leave
unhappy as they will be helped with finances. *Feminists think that the
sheer fact that women are wage earners creates conflict in the couple,

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Conflict/ Criticisms
Functionalist- they believe that divorce rates increasing is to do with
higher expectations, but not an actual rejection of marriage as a social
institute as many people go on to marry again.
New Right- Dislike rise in divorce rates, undermines the traditional
nuclear family.
Feminists- Agree with increase, women are beginning to break free from
the oppression that the traditional family entails.…read more


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