They were amongst the first sociologists to identify family diversity.
1- Orgnaisational Diversity- How families organise themselves e.g. Division of Labour
2- Cultural Diversity- People with differnt ethinicity and relgions have differnt lifestyles.
3- Class Diversity- Difference between classes affect child rearing and adult relationships
4- Life cycle diversity- Different Families are in different stages of there family life
5- Cohert Diversity - Different peer groups have been brought up in different time periods i.e people raised in war have different values to people today.
Eversely and Bonnerjea
Family Diversity affected by the regions the live in
1 Sunbelt- This is when people live in wealthy areas and have 2 parent families.
2 Geriatic Wards - Areas on the south coast attract old reitired couples e.g Eastbourne
3 Older Industrial areas suffering from decline- Have conventional nuclear families, and traditional roles e.g Sheffields.
4 Inner city areas- One parent families and ethnic miniorities as housing is cheap etc. e.g lozells
5 Rural areas- Have stong kinship bond as based on the farms !
Gay and Lesbian Families
Estimated 5-7% of adult population in 2007 were in same sex relationship
Same sex relationships are much more tolerated in soceity now
Social policies refelect this, for example
- since 2002 all couples, whatever there sexual persuasion are now allowed to adopt
- Civil partnership act of 2004 , gives same sex couples similar rights as heterosexual couples .
Increase in Single parenthood
- Lone parents make up 24% of all families
-90% are headed by women (because the caughts say the women has the nuturing, caring role)
- Until the 1990's divorced women were the largest group of lone parents, but now it has been taked over by single or never married women.
- A child living in a lone parent family is twice as likely to be living in poverty than a child with to parents.
Causes of single parent hood
Causes for single parenthood:
- Divorce, Seperation, Death of spouse
Single parents who have never married:
- Have a child but the parents have since seperated, The other parent never did care for the chld
Rise in lone motherhood:
1. Increase in divorce rate
2. Increase in births out of money (Mark Brown said in earlier times shot gun weddings were more common, but now partners may choose to co habit than marry)
Consequences and Effects of Single Parenthod
New Right- single parent contribute to the underclass, other sociologists disagree such as McIntosh and claim that single mother have been scape goated for problems such as youth crime. Whatever the views are single parent familes always go hand in hand with poor living standards
EFFECTS ON CHILDREN
- Children are more likely to experience poverty, become deliquent, and participate in drug use, these problems are cause more by low income than the absence of a parent
- Research shows that education is affected by divorce even before it takes place.
Sociologists view on Single Parenthood
- Single parent families are important as they are an emerging family type, and should be accepted. But we should bear in mind that NO ONE aspires to be in a single parent family.
Burghs and Brown
- Found that women aspire to be in a two parent household
Ethnicity and family diveristy
- White and Carribeans have higher divorce rates than other ethnicities
- Indians, Africans, Asians, Bangledeshis, and Pakistans= most likey to be married
- 90% of south asian familes with children had married parents compared to 75% of white and 50 % of Carribean familes.
- There has been an increase in single parenthood in ALL of the above ethnic groups
Marriages have declined and cohabitation has increased
- Over 2 million couples cohabit in Britain
- 20% of all unmarried adults under 60 cohabit, twice as much than in 1986, this is expected to double by 2021
- Less stigma attached to sex outside marriage
- Changing attitudes of the young
- Secularisation, less attention paid to religon- therefore not marriage is not important
- Financial Security is no longer important as women are more likely to have a career and therefore do not see the need for marriage
Neo- conventional Family
Robert Chester says:
- If you look at the number of people rather than the number of households, you'll find that 50% of the population live in a nuclear household. Rather than only the proposed 25% household living in a nuclear household
- He also says if you look at a 'snapshot' of people lives that we have all been part of a nuclear family at one point in our lives.
- He also accepts that mny families are no longer conventional, but says the are 'neo- conventional' as there is an increase in wives working.
Ethnicity and family diveristy continued
- South Asian familes:
Ballard found children experience two cultures= DICHOTOTMY, and are allowed to have some say about their marriage BUT cannot reject the idea of arranged marriage. And despite the distance families retain their links with families in India, and also the ties between south Asian families remain close.
- West indian families:
Barrow found that mother centred families in Britain relied on less on the support of the female kin that in the West Indies.