Conjugal Roles

Revision cards on the section Conjugal roles within families and households.

HideShow resource information

Some key terms

CR (Conjugal Roles) played by a married couple in home.

NF (nuclear family) - husband, wife, children - in NF roles between husband+wife segregated by tradition.

DDOL (Domestic division of labour) - Roles that men + women play relating to Childcare, housework and paid work.

1 of 4

Parsons (1955) FUNCTIONALIST

  • INSTRUMENTAL role - Man FINANCIAL PROVIDER / / SUCCESS @ WORK
  • EXPRESSIVE role - Wife PRIMARY SOCIALISATION / / EMOTIONAL NEEDS

Parsons 

'based on biological differences men + women "naturally" suited to these roles. This division of labour is beneficial to both men & women, children & wider society.

Politicians of NR (new right) support Parsons view.

FEMINISTS reject this view. - argue that division of labour was created to justify exploitation of women & benefit men.

2 of 4

March of Progress View

Conjugal roles have changed and are now seen to be equal.

Elizabeth Bott Describes two types of conjugal roles.

Segregated conjugal roles // Close-knit                                               Joint conjugal roles // loose-knit

Wilmott and Young Two studies

1. 1950s segregated roles - working class. Men - breadwinners         Women - Full-time housewives 2. 1975 CHANGE!! More towards joint conjugal roles + symmetrical family "72% husbands did housework" 

Feminists disagree

1.The family is a source of inequality       

2. Poorly conducted study. One question asked Does your husband help out atleast once a week with any household chores" This could include husband making himself a cup of tea.

3 of 4

Reasons for rise of symmetrical family

  • Geographical Mobility People found companionship within their own villages meaning the family was more equal as they had similar jobs and backgrounds.
  • Change in woman's position Women went out to work giving them independance.
  • Home centredness Home a more pleasant place
  • Child centredness Less children but focus of family.

Do we have equal relationships within the family? How can we measure equality?

4 of 4

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar Sociology resources:

See all Sociology resources »See all Families and households resources »