- Type of household:
- Nuclear Family - stability, not judged, expected in society and simple. However - Trapped
- Single - Bigger bond with parent living with. However - Finance problems, mixed emotions, no role model for person of gender who isn't living there
- Reconstituted Family - Lots of family. However - Don't get on
- Student Halls - Friends, individual, experience, money, social. However - Arguments, mess and noise
- Cohabiting - Test tun before marriage, money. However religious reasons
General trends in divorce, co habitation and marriage since the 1950s:
- 1972 highest ever number couples since WW11 got married
- Number of marriages reached all-tome low in 2005
- 3/4 Pakistani and Bangladeshi woman are married by 25
- 1/2 white women married by 25
- People delaying marriage rather than rejecting it
Cohabitation and Marital breakdown
- Rise in # of cohabitating couples in last decade
- With or without children
- ONS data 1/3 teens in 2007 cohab rather than marry
- NR commentators say that cohabitation is less stable compared to marriage
- Empty-shell marriages - stay together in name only, do for the children, religious reasons
- Seperation - used a lot in the past, agree to live apart, cheaper than divorce
- Divorce - legal ending of a marriage, 'irretrievable breakdown' 'quickie divorces' - costly, adultery, fault, guilt
- Britains divorce rate is higher compared to other European countries
- 1/2 as many divorces as marriages
- NR sociologists say children who exp divorce are more likely to suffer a range of problems
- Changes in divorce law make it easier
- Couples no longer do empty-shell marriages
- Most divorce petitions done by women
- Divorce is no longer seen as shame
Postmodern approches to divorce - Divorce increasing, less pressue for tradition, choices, conflict
Divorce trends implies that monogamy will become serial monogamy
- 40% of marriages will end in divorce
- 7/10 divorce petitions come from women
- Statistics might be worse as people may be living seperate or in empty shell marriages
Declining stigma and changing attitudes - stigma is a negative label, people see it as acceptable
Changes in the law - NEW RIGHT - women have been given more rights, more reasons, cheaper
- 1969 divorce if you didn't get on
- 1984 file for divorce after 1 year instead of 3
- 2004 civil partnerships were made equal with marriages
- 2007 couples were allowed 50:50 split of possesions
Rising expectations of marriage:
- Funtionalist sociologists think high exp are high course for divorce
- Love not only reason - money
Changes in position of women - FEMINST VIEW:
- Economic position of women has got better
- 2005 70% of women were in paid work
Secularisation - GENERAL SOCIETY:
- Decline in influence of religion
- Religious institutions are losing their influence
Family = social group characterised by common residence, economic co-operation and reproduction (New Right)
Says all good things v tradition based
Conservative ideology = todays idea e.g advert (family - KFC, fairy liquid)
Organic Analogy = society functions like a boduy
Consensus = Everyone working together
Talcott Parsons view of the family evolving
Pre industrial - agricultural economy, extended family, labour intensive productions, family as consumers (Pre 1750 - ascription)
Then: Industrialisation (expressive leader - women + instrumental leader - men) and Technological development lead to....
Industrial society - manufacturing economy, nuclear family, machine intensive, family as consumers (1900s - achievement)
Structural differentiation - many jobs to specialised jobs
Family functions = primary socialisation of children and stabilisation of the adult personality
Feminist view on family
- Saw problem as patriarchy - men ruled everything
- Patriarchy caused a problem everywhere
- Women = One class. Men = Another class
- Against domestic violence.
Socialist feminists (marxists) - Saw problems in society, worked with working class, worked with men
- Legal changes to improve position of women e.g. sex discrimination act, equal pay act, employment protection act
- Blame the law - thought the law was the problem
3rd wave feminists = UK Feminista (moderner) - protest in todays society
Marxists say about family
Karl Marx (1818-1883) - argued bourgeoisie are the minority that benefit from the work of the proletariat. Proletariat = poor minority. Bourgeoisie keep all the profits and become richer - capitalism benefits B, but disads P
Inheritance of property - Marxs (capitalism) believe family made women just to produce children for man to inherit the wealth: 'A mere instrument for the production of children' Contrast funct think its a good thing, but marxs believe it takes independence away.
Ideological functions - Ideology = ideas. Family teaches children their place (hierarchy).
Unit of consumption - Family is a unit to buy things, therefore making profit for the economy - 'pester power' + 'keeping up with the Joneses'
Class diversity and sexual diversity
- Rapoport et al (1982) suggest that there may be differences between middle-class and working-class families
- Difference in how children how socialised and disciplined
- Some sociologists argue that middle-class parents are more child-centred than working-class parents
- Evidence that extended kinship ties are important to the upper class
- NR concerned with increasing # of same - sex couples who are cohabitating
- Increasing trend with s-s couples are adopting
- NR say it is 'unnatural'
- Government giving same rights as hetrosexual married couples to homosexual married couples
Postmodernism and family diversity + Demography (c
Postmodernism and family diversity - Characterised by diversity, variation and instability
- Premarital sex, serial monogamy, single-sex relationships and childlessness are now acceptable alternative lifestyles
- Men roles are no longer clear cut
- 'Crisis of masculinity' has led to men redefining both their sexuality and family commitments
- Beck and Beck (1995) argue that such choice/diversity have led to renegotiation of family
Demography and diversity - some conclusions - Changes (fertility rate etc) have had effect on family structure in the modern UK
- Changes have undermined the tradionalist NR view of nuc family
- 2005 37% couples children
- 25 % couples with no children
- 40% live in non-traditional family
Was Talcott Parsons right?
Peter Laslett 1972 - Thinks TP is wrong as only 10% in Pre-I times were extd families - used English parish records.
Michael Anderson 1971 - Disagress with TP. Studied indus town of Preston - put wages into helping
Young and Willmott 1973 - Also think TP was wrong about the speed of change.
More on GP Murdock
Reproduction, Marriage and sexual relations, economic and education.
Murdock and Parsons theory is aimed a white middle class familes - problem as not always the case/work in todays society.
Childhood is a social construction that isn't biological stage (0-18), it is socially decided.
Time - Philippe Aries (1962) childhood like it is today didn't exist in medieval times
- Early industrialisation 1750 - Little distinction between children and adults.
- Victorian period Mid 19th century - Schools and games become popular and children became more important.
- Childhood in 20th century - Emergence of a child-centred society.
Place - Some countries treat children as child soliders/labourers
Space - Gender, Sexuality, Rural, Urban, and social class