Family Ideology


'The Perfect Family'

In a Western society, an 'ideal' family is stereotypically supppsed to look like;

  • People are married once
  • Maternal instincts are natural
  • Only a stable familyt can ensure the successful unbringing of children
  • The nuclear family is the best time of family
  • No step familly
  • All women want to have kids
  • Heterosexual
  • Father has biological kids
  • Women are responsible for domesticity and childcare
  • Parents stay together
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Familial Ideology

Familial Ideology refers to the dominant set of ideas about how families are and what they should be like.

  • Monogomous marriage - neither have been married before
  • Privatised, nuclear family - Two parents living with their own, bilogical, dependent children.
  • Maternal love - Mother is responsible for housework, childcare, nurting and caring
  • Patriarchal - Male is the breadwinner and responsible for discipline
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Edmund Leach

Edmund Leach (1967) stated that 'The term ceral packet family refers to a very specific tupe of nuclear family; There are 2 heterosexual parents and their own biological children. The father is the breadwinner and the mother is a housewife.

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Diana Gittins

Diana Gittins (1993) believes that the idealised picture of the nuclear family acts as a powerful ideology defining what is normal and desirable so every other family type is seen as abnornmal and undesirable.

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