The Personal Life Perspective of the Family



- Changes in the way people live have caused some sociologists to reconsider the study of the family.

- Traditional sociology is often focused on marriage and blood relations, but in contemporary society people have meaningful relationships with others apart from the family.

- Personal life perspective looks at the interactions between people in relationships and the networks that connect individuals.

May (2011)

- Changes in society have meant that people often draw meaning from relationships outside of the family unit.

- Greater diversity of family life and increase in lone-person households means that functions of family are often fulfilled by others.

- People construct their own networks of individuals, including family members, that fulfil their needs.

Smart (2011)

- Sociology of the family is ethnocentric and is focused mainly on the white middle-class family.

- People can develop meaningful relationships with those outside of the family, such as friends.

- Family is not necessarily more important than friends and as a consequence, people can choose their support networks or families of choice.

- Connectedness thesis.

- Smart examined different aspects of personal life that had often been neglected by traditional approaches to the sociology of the family.

- She identified five key concepts that were interconnected and influenced the personal…


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