The Rappoports' Theory of Family Diversity



- Rhonda and Robert Rappoport argued that, in the 1980s, the family was becoming a more diverse institution rather than being a conventional or nuclear family as others suggested.

- In the wake of rapid social change from the 1960s onwards, the different types of family were changing and the Rappoports identified the changes that were occurring.

- They used a range of secondary sources to establish five types of diversity in daily life.

The Five Types of Family Diversity

- Organisational Diversity.

- Cultural Diversity.

- Social Class Diversity.

- Life Course Diversity.

- Cohort Diversity.

Organisational Diversity

- This refers to the organisation of the family structure and its support networks,

- Some families may divide labour equally, others may have a main provider and a parent that stays at home.

- Other families may rely upon the assistance of relatives or friends to support them.

- Employment, marital status and the presence of non-biological guardians and parents all have different impacts on family life.

Cultural Diversity

- In the United Kingdom, there was mass migration in the post-war period, creating greater ethnic diversity in society.

- Families from minority ethnic backgrounds may have different structures, different ways of…


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