Sociologists disagree as to whether couples are becoming more equal. (1)Functionalists and the New Right argue for the necessity of (2)segregated conjugal roles based on biological differences between sexes.
However, (3)'March of progress' sociologists argue that the family is becoming more symmetrical with joint conjugal roles.
(1) Parsons - Instrumental and expressive roles. Husband is geared towards success at work, breadwinner financially providing for family. / Wife geared towards primary socialisation, meeting fam's emotional needs. - Based on bio diffs. both suited to their roles. beneficial to all; the famiily and wider society A02 Feminists - Division of labour only benefits men
(2) Bott - Two types of families: Seperated (Typical) and joint conjugal roles. (work is shared)
(3) Young + Willmott - Study of bethnall Green (WC) showed trend towards seperate C.R. and symmetrical family.- Women now working / men sharing housework. - Changes: Women's positions / Geog. mobility / New tech (labour saving) / Higher living standards
(1)Feminists argue men's contribution remains minimal and women now shoulder a (2)dual burden of paid and unpaid work, or even perform a (3)triple shift that also includes emotional work. some argue this is because of (4)gender scripts which do not exist in Lesbian relationships
(1) Oakley - Criticise Y+W. Claims exaggerated - Helping wives could simply be occasionaly making breakfast. Only 15% of husbands have high level of participation in housework. / Boulton - Fewer than 20% of husbands had a major role in childcare
(2) Since working Women acquired a dual burden of work; paid and unpaid. Men still benefit from women's domestic labour and wages A02 Silver + Schor - Argue housework has been commercialised (ready-meals, microwaves) and so housework has decreased
Ferri + Smith - Fathers took main responsibility for childcare in less than 4% of families. Increased women's employment had little impact on share of domestic labour A02 Ramos - Where main is not in paid work and woman full-time: man's domestic labour matches wife's
(3) Duncombe and Marsden - As well as Dual burden is emotion work.
(4) Dunne - Expectations or norms setting out how we expect couples to act - Study of L.bian couples shows more symmetry (equal importance to careers, share housework)
Couples remain unequal in (1)decision making and (2)control of resources. Men earn more and are more likely to take the major decisions, even when incomes are pooled. (3)Radical feminists argue that (4)domestic violence is an extreme form of (5)patriarchal power over women. However, though most victims are female, not all women are equally at risk.
(1) Barrett + McIntosh - Men benefit more from women's domestic work than they give in £ support / £ support often unpredictable and 'strings attatched' / Men make decisions on spending w. important items
(2) Edgell - Husband had final say on v. important decisions, important decisions taken jointly but not by wife alone, but wife made less important decisions.
(3) Dom. violence an inevitable part of patriarchy. / Male dominated state institutions explains reluctancy of police + courts to deal w/ dom. violence. A02 Elliot - Not all men are aggressive and most are opposed to dom. violence.
(4) British Crime survey - Dom. violence 1/6 of violent crimes. / Mirrlees-Black - Most victims are women, 99% of incidents vs. women are by men, almost 1/4 women has been assaulted by a partner - A02 Wilkinson - Dom. violence a result of stress bcause. social inequality. Worries about £, jobs, and lack of time+£ restricts social circles and support.
Childhood is a social construction and varies between times, places and groups. Most sociologists see our idea of childhood as a fairly recent one, the result of industrialisation and other social changes. Modern society constructs childhoodas a time of vulnerability, innocence and segregation
(1) Pilcher - Most important notion of childhood is seperateness with a clear seperate status. Empasised through: Laws, dress, products and services for children. 'Golden age of happiness. A02 - Other cultures do not see same difference between child and and adulthood. Punch - Rural Bolivia children as young as 5 take responsibility in the home and community.
(2) Reasons for changes in position of children - -Laws restricitng child labour / Intro. of compulsory schooling 1880 / Child protection + welfare leg. 1889 prevention of cruelty to children act / Growth of ideas of children's right / Declining family size + lower infant mortality rate / Children's health + dev. became subject of medical knowledge eg. Donzelot - studies of child dev, appeard in the 19th cent.
(3)Historical differences. Aries - Studied art from the period. Childhood didn't exist in the middle ages. Adulthood also began much earlier. Childhood emerged fromo 13th Cent: Schools specialised in edu. of the young / Growing distinction in clothing (17th cent.) / Handbooks on childrearing (18th cent.)
'March of Progress' socs. believe we live in an increasingly 'child-centered' society. They state children have never had it so good. Critics argue that this ignores the continued existence of child poverty, abuse and exploitation.
(1) Lloyd De Mause "The nightmare of childhood is one from which we have only just begun to awaken." Children better cared for, more valued, protected and educated. e.g. 2008 U.K spent £64bn. on Edu.
(2) Conflict sociologists - Inequalities amongst children - 90% of world's low birth-weight babies are born in 3rd world countries
Hillman - gender differences. boys more likely to be allowed to go out after dark/cross roads.
Bhatti - Ethnic differences. Izzat (family honour) restricted behaviour of many Asian girls.
Howard - class differences. Children born into poorer families more likely to die in infancy/fall behind in school / suffer longstanding illness.
Inequalities between children and adults. Neglect + abuse. Clarke. 2006 31,400 children on child protection register / Childline recieves 20k calls a year about sexual/physical abuse / Control over space. Hillman 1971 80% 7-8 yr olds walked to school on their own / 1990 9%.
Inequalities between children and adults.
Neglect + abuse. Clarke. 2006 31,400 children on child protection register / Childline recieves 20k calls a year about sexual/physical abuse
Control over space. Hillman 1971 80% 7-8 yr olds walked to school on their own / 1990 9%.
time. Adults control children's routines; get up, go to sleep. A02 - Holmes' study of Samoans - 'Too young' never an excuse for a child not undertaking a task.
Bodies. How children sit, clothing, hairstyle, washing children, feeding etc. How children touch their own bodies, e.g. not picking their nose / sucking their thumb. A02 Malinowski - Adults took interest into children's sexual explorations and activites in Trobrian Isles.
access. to resources. Limited oppor. to earn money and so are eco. dependent: Labour laws, child benefits paid to parents, pocket money may be depnt. on 'good behaviour'
Age patriarchy Gittins Adult domination and child dependency. / Thiara 1/4 of 200 women in study left husband as they feared for child's life / Hockey + James children 'acting up' (like adults) to resist adult control - swearing, smoking, drinking. A02 - Children are not powerless. 1989 Children act/ UN convention on rights of the child
The future of Childhood
Postman Disappearance of childhood Same rights as adults, children commiting adult crimes, similar clothing, decline in children's games - Due to rise of TV culture + decline in print culture Qvortrup Falling birth/rising death rates - fewer voices for children, more isolated - families smaller, less children in neighbourhood A02 relative scarcity of children could mean they're more valued + powerful.
A02 Opie A seperate childhood culture Research into children song's, rhymes "strong evidence of continued children's culture, Refutes Postman's theory of no children's games.
Globalisation of western childhood humanitarian agencies have exported western norms of childhood (seperate life stage, based in nuc. family + school, no eco. role and vulnerable E.g. campains vs. child labour in 3rd world countries - assume how childhood should be / may be a norm in other cultures. Childhood not disappearing but spreading throughout the world
Palmer Reconstruction of childhood 'toxic childhood' dev. - tech + cult changes (junk food, pc games, marketing) / Margo + Dixon UK near top of intl tables for obesity, self-harm, drug + alcohol abuse A02 depends on aspect of childhood. Children have more rights but not same as adults / growing similarities with adults / compulsory edu - children eco. dpndt. for longer