Sociology - Family

  • Created by: Elina
  • Created on: 14-04-18 13:13
Stonewall (organisation - 2008)
Approximately 5 to 7% of the adult population today have a same-sex relationship
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Jeffrey Weeks (1999)
Increase in social acceptance explains the growing trend.
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Plummer (1976)
Argues that homosexuals are less likely to establish long-term relationships as homosexuality is stigmatised
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The Rapaports (1989)
Claim that the lone parent family was increasingly accepted and is becoming accepted as an alternative to other family structures.
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Charles Murray ( 1990 - New Right)
Single parents contribute to create the underclass and the generous welfare state encourages women to have children that they couldn't afford to support.
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Laslett (1965)
Reckoned that a quarter of all marriages in the 17th century England were remarried due to the death of a spouse.
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Laslett (1991 - General Household Survey)
4/5 men and 3/4 women who divorced before they turned 35 remarried within 10 years.
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Burgoyne and Clarks (1984)
Found that: children are still attached to natural parents and may become hostile towards the step-parent; potential of step parent not being accepted by other family members.
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De’Ath and Slater (1992)
Children may be pulled in two directions by their natural parents; and tense relationship between the step-parents - puts strain on new relationship.
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Peter Stein
Argues that a growing number are deliberately choosing to live alone. However, Some are alone as there are a few partners available in their age groups (Mainly older widows).
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Wilson and Smallwood
Decline in marriage from 1974 to 1986 because of the 1969 divorce
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Patricia Morgan (2003)
People marry later (e.g.Because of careers or wanting to gain financial independence), acceptance of diverse family types, Decline in birth rate and secularisation.
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Empty shell marriages (love is gone, but they're still together for the sake of their children).
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Allen and Crow
No longer a financial unit.
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High expectations of marriage due to mass media leads to higher divorce rate.
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Patricia Morgan
Views rising cohabitation as a trend that will go out of fashion.
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Joanne Chandler (1993)
Cohabitation is a good alternative to marriage.
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Confluent love (keep looking for someone until they find the one).
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Crockett and Tripp
Children from divorced homes are more likely to: underachieve in education, suffer poor health/mental illness/ commit suicide, experience unemployment and poverty. Children wanted their parents to stay together even if the relation was strained.
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Wallerstein (2000)
Did a longitudinal study (1970s to 2000s).Found that effects of divorce aren’t short-term.Children had a fear of committing to a relationship (even in adulthood) due to their parents divorce.1/2 of the children studied got involved in drugs/alcohol.
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Elliot (1996)
Disagrees that all men benefit from violence against women. Not all men are aggressive and most are opposed to domestic violence and even less likely to admit to being abused.
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Mirlees Black
Radical feminists don't explain female violence, e.g. abuse against children or partner. 1/7 men have been assaulted and 1/20 repeatedly.
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Dobash and Dobash (2007
Argue that domestic violence is an inevitable feature of a patriarchal society, it serves to preserve power.
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Hakim (2010)
Voluntary childlessness (women are choosing not to have children).
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McKeown (1967)
Better nutrition as there is more advanced knowledge in medicine and improved water conditions.
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Tranter (1996)
Decline in infectious diseases (vaccination), Introduction to antibiotics and the NHS, and improvement and advanced knowledge for midwives.
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Berthaud (South Asians)
33% live in multi-generation extended family
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Victor et al (2014)
Did a study in South England. Found that 90% of South Asians live in an extended family.
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Chamberlain and Goulbourne
Extended kin support them, fictive kin for example friends and neighbours.
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Modern individualism - females have more independence.
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Pratt (2009)
Women are more likely to marry outside of their race, which increases mixed race or dual heritage families
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Bruce (Cultural Defence)
Have to assimilate to the values of the country they are living in. Start emphasising the difference due to a negative association.
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Murdock (1949)
4 main functions of the family: sexual gratification, economic, educational, and reproduction.
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Parsons (1955) - Functional Fit Theory
In a PI family an extended family met the needs of that society as the family was a unit of production and more members meant more workers;nowadays nuclear families meet the needs of a contemporary society as they're geographically/socially mobile.
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Parsons - 2 Irreducible Functions
2 functions that can only be done by the family are: Primary socialisation and the stabilisation of adult personalities (the family is soothes and relieves you)
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Dunscombe and Marsden (1995)
Women have a triple shift (women have to do housework, childcare and emotional work).
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Ansley (1972)
” Women are the takers of ****” -Men can't exert their dominance at work which means they exert dominance at home, which could lead to domestic violence.
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Delphy and Leonard (1992)
Women provide the safety valve - a safety valve is a mechanism that prevents explosion.
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Benston (1972)
The family reproduces the workforce for little cost.
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Men only understand small jobs in childcare and don't understand women's role
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Millet and Firestone (1970)
Argue that there are sex classes and that housework should be paid work.
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Greer (2007)
Relationships between men and women remain highly patriarchal in all spheres.
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Redfern and Aune
: Argue that women are treated as second class citizens which may lead to domestic violence.
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Oakley (1981)
Gender inequality is the product of discrimination by those who run the institutions. Gender socialisation in the family is the key to women’s oppression.
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Calhoun (2003)
Lesbian women can't be exploited by men.
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Handerson et al (2010)
Suggests that mothers exercise surveillance over their own parenting style. Mumsnet (2011) support this as it reveals that many mothers have lied to cover things up.
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Believe that the monogamous nuclear family developed to ensure that the legitimate child would receive inheritance.
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Althusser - Ideological Control (ISA/RSA)
Argues that in order for capitalism to survive working class need to conform to ruling class ideas.
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David Copper (1972)
Children are taught to conform to authority as it will be easier to exploit in the future.
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Zaretsky (1976)
Family acts like a safety valve, it is an escape from oppression at work.
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Zaretsky (1976)
3 functions of the family: Family is an agent of socialisation, Stabilisation of adult personalities, Unit of consumption - consumption distracts from exploitation.
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Leach - Cereal Packet Family
How the media views and portrays the family in advertisements (in the mass media). A particular ideal family type.
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Murray (1940)
‘Generous’ Welfare benefits, such as council housing for unmarried teenage mothers, encourage deviant and dysfunctional family types that harm society.
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⅔ of the average income of lone parent families are from benefits.
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Butler (2010)
Broken families cause social issues.
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Harding (1996)
Best council housing often goes to married couples with children.
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Eileen Drew (1995)
SP’s reinforce gender roles. Conservative supports traditional nuclear family. Labour supports diverse family types.
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Leach (1967) and Land (1978)
Nuclear family is the best, tax breaks support married heterosexual couples.
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Barrett and McIntosh
Reproduces women’s inequalities. Familial ideologies oppress women and reproduces triple shift.
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Leonard (Marxist Feminist, 1978)
SP’s only appear to help women, e.g. Maternity Pay encourages gender roles and their child grows up to enter the workforce which allows capitalism to grow.
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Ansley (1977)
SP’s don’t recognise the violence resulting from capitalist oppression
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Mary Botts Research (1957)
She found that there are 2 types of roles in the family - segregated conjugal roles and joint conjugal roles.
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Young and Willmott (1971) - Symmetrical Family
There are 4 stages: Pre-Industrial - family is a unit of production; Early Industrial - Family members employed in factories, The Symmetrical Family - joint conjugal work and Stratified Diffusion.
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Jane Wheelock (1990)
Husbands are at home because of unemployment and it is a way of passing time.
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Oakley (1974 - Sociology of Housework)
claims that there is no MOP. She found that only 15% of men had high involvement in housework and 25% in childcare (interviewed 40 housewives in London)
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Boulton (1983)
found 20% of husbands had high involvement in housework.
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Gershunny (1994)
Women still have a dual burden even though they are in paid employment.
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Warde and Hetherington (1993)
Women are 30 times more likely to be the last person to clean and men are 30 times more likely to be the last one to wash the car
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Sullivan (2000)
Sullivan (2000)
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Boulton (1989)
Although the father may help with childcare it’s the mother who takes responsibility for the child’s security and well being. All research done on childcare only looks at quantitative data.
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Brown et al (2011)
3/10 families had a father who was the main care, the rest were ‘background fathers.’
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Hochschild (20130
Women do emotional work.
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Pahl and Vugler (1993)
types of control over the family income - the allowance system and pooling (egalitarian - equal).
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Barrett and McIntosh
Men gain more from women’s domestic work than they give back in financial support.
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Edgell (1980)
Very important decisions are made by men, important decisions is done jointly. Less important decisions are made by women.
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Hardill et al (1997)
In middle class families important decisions are made by men (little change from Edgell’s view).
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Dunne (1999)
Traditional domestic division of labour continues because of gender scripts.
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Carrington (1999)
Lesbian families had tension regarding housework - there is no symmetry, roles need to split.
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Punch (2001) - Rural Bolivia
Found that children at the age of 5yrs work and at a young age (8+) they form sexual relationships.
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Pilcher (1995)
Most important feature of childhood is its separateness from adulthood.
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Wagg (1992)
‘Childhood is a social construct. It’s in other words, what members of society of particular societies, at a particular times and in a particular place say it is.
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Aries (1960) - Historian
Middle Ages children above the age of 6 (approx.) were called ‘mini adults.’ They went to work and were economical assets and faced the same consequences as adults.
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Sharpe (1976), Oakley (1985) and Fine (2010)
Girls are socialised differently compared to boys in two different sets of behaviour and are based on cultural expectations of masculinity and femininity
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McRobbie (2000)
Girls are subjected to more control as girls are seen as needing more protection than boys.
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Toning down of their (boys) emotional and familial intimacy.’
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Lareau (2011)
‘Concerted cultivation of children’ - middle class parents teach children to be more academic so that they can go to university.
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Donzelot (1979)
Regulation of working class parenting.
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‘Special people with unique needs.’ - children need nurturing and protection
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Cunningham (2006)
Three major features of a Child Centred Society:Childhood is seen as the opposite of adulthood, social worlds of adults are physically and symbolically separate, and children have certain rights.
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Wells (2009)
The regulation of Childhood is organised around saving children. E.g. NHS
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Palmer (2010) - Toxic Childhood
Rapid technological and cultural changes has damaged children's physical/emotional/intellectual development.UK youth have above average rates of self-harm, obesity, drug and alcohol abuse, violence, early sexual experiences and teenage pregnancies.
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Pugh (2002)
70% of 10 to 14 year olds in 2014 were involved in self harm. ‘Consumption as compensation’.
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Palmer - 2 concerns
Children as consumers - manipulate parents using pester power; Conspicuous consumption - parents show of wealth through children.
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Postman (1994) - The Disappearance Of Childhood
Children have the same rights as adults, disappearance in traditional supervised games. Similarity in children's and adult clothing. Moved from Print culture to TV culture.
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Philips (1997)
Good parenting has been affected by state policies.
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Jenks (2002)
argues that childhood is a social construct, thus will be changing not disappearing.
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Bhatti (1999)
(Ignores inequalities among children) - South Asians have particular values which restricts girls behaviour because family honour equals ‘izzat.’
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Hillman (1993)
(Ignores inequalities among children) -Boys are more likely to be allowed to go out after dark unaccompanied than girls.
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Firestone (1974) and Holt (1974)
(Ignores inequalities between children and adults) - argues that protection of children oppresses them and subjects them to control as they are made powerless because they depend on adults.
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Morrows Research (1998)
Children can be constructive and reflective and actively participate in discussions and make decisions so they aren't passive.
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We need to see childhood from the point of view of the child and they should have a say.
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Giddens - Individualised Childhood
Children's experiences are individual, based on consumption. children have become more individualised because of the influence of consumption and the decline in obedience.
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Since 2000 has been an increase on gadgets in the home.
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Livingstone (2009)
‘Screen rich bedroom culture.’
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Rompney And Roe
‘Living together but separately.’
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Children in gay families, lone parent or reconstituted families experience childhood differently compared to those in conventional two parent nuclear families.
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Parents have to also be answerable to children
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Giddens (1992)
Argues that late modernity has led to the transformation of intimacy. This means that children had more democratic relationships with their parents, where they can negotiate decision making.
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Chester (1985)
Believes that at some point in everyone's life course they will come back to either a Neo-conventional or conventional nuclear family making them more dominant. Family diversity ends with a nuclear family.
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The Rapaports (2003)
In 2003 their research showed that the number of households consisting of the nuclear families was just at 23%.
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The Rapaports (1982)
In 1982 they introduced five types of diversity: Organisational, Life stage, Social Class, Generational and Cultural Diversity.
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Kiernan And Holmes (2010)
Lone parenthood is the most common among black and mixed-race mother's, particularly in deprived areas in the UK.
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Fractured Families (2013)
Children from single parent families are more likely to: need medical treatment, leave school earlier be depressed, drink alcohol and suffer from drug abuse.
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Flouri And Buchanan ( 2002) - Studied 170,000 children from families where parents have split but the father remains in contact
Children were more successful in gaining educational qualifications, less likely to get into trouble with the police, however, if conflict continues after divorce children could become vulnerable to mental health issues.
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Mooney et al’s Study (2002)
Found that parental conflict is more important than parental separation as an influence on negative outcomes for children.
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Ford And Millar (1998)
‘Perverse incentive argument is flawed’ - lots of people are in poverty even though they receive benefits.
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Cashmore (1985)
better to have one parent than two bad parents (caused by conflict).
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The Social Justice Policy Group (2007)
Found that youth crime was a link to a range of factors, all of which are found in two parent families.
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ONS (2012)
5.9 million people are cohabiting - Since 1996 there has been an increase in couples cohabiting.
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Found evidence to suggest that cohabiting couples are less happy and fulfilled than married couples.
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Murphy (2007)
Analysed ONS data and suggested that children from a cohabiting family were more likely to get worse results at school, leave school earlier and have high risks of developing illness.
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Benson (2010)
Argues that couples are more stable in marriage.Researched 15,000 babies and found those born to a cohabiting couple had a 20% chance of breaking and those born to a married couple had a 6% chance of breaking within the first 3yrs of a child's life.
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Beaujouan and Ni Bhrocjaint (2011)
Found that two-thirds of people aged 25 to 44 have cohabited. Cohabitation means that we relationships are screened out at some point in their lives; 80% of marriages now are preceded by cohabitation
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Barlow and Duncan (2000)
Don’t get married as it is expensive.
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Pahl and Spencer (2001):
Argue that the concept of family is no longer useful in the 21st century. People have ‘fictive kin.’ Since there is no more structure, you can choose to maintain relationships with actual kin.
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Weeks (1999)
Chosen families - friendships become a type of kinship network.
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Weeks (1999)
Chosen families - friendships become a type of kinship network.
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Smart (2007, Personal Life)
Personal life perspective should be used as it is more neutral and flexible as it goes beyond marriage and biological kin to include newer types of relationships.
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Stacey (1998 - Divorce extended families)
he used case studies from Silicon Valley, California and found that even after divorce they stayed in contact with ex-family members from spouse’s side.
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Giddens (Individual Thesis)
People are disembedded from traditional values - family is no longer shaped by structures. Notes that with more choice, personal relationships become less stable - the pure relationships become less stable.
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Smart (connected thesis)
We are social beings whose choices are made within a web of connectedness.
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ONS (2013)
Found in 2012, 66.3% of people in social class 1 (professional jobs) were married in contrast to 44.5% in social class 7 (unskilled manual labour).
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Berthaud (2000)
¾ of Pakistani and Bangladeshi women are married by 25 compared to over ½ of white women.
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Decline in marriage is responsible for morality and social order. Married men are more likely to be employed and earn 10-20% more because they’re committed to marriage.
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Welfare state has damaged marriage.
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Religion has less influence
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Askams (1984)
If they no longer love the person they will leave the relationship. Individual choice. Also found there is cultural shift.
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British Social Attitudes
People will see marriage as desirable regardless of marital status. Around 40% of marriages are remarriages.
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Khan (2014)
Up to 20,000 polygamous Muslim marriages in the UK
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Starweather and Hames (2012)
Practice of polyandry is very common across 80 cultural groups.
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Epstein (2011)
Interviewed more than 100 Indian, Pakistani and Orthodox Jewish couples that were in arranged marriages and compared them against 30yrs of research into love marriages. Arranged marriages were more stable.
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Objects same-sex marriages as she argues that it indicates rejection of Christian values and consciousness, and a general decline.
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ONS (2012)
34% of marriages will end in divorce by the 20th wedding anniversary.
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UK Data
In 1938 there was 6,000 divorces granted and in 1993 it rose to 165,000
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ONS (2012)
The younger a couple are, the more likely they are to divorce.
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Beck and Beck - Gernsheim (1993)
Individualisation affects divorce rates as people are under less pressure to conform to traditional collective goals set by family members,religion or culture. People have the freedom to pursue individual goals.
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Hirsch (2005)
Encourage old people to move into smaller houses so that families can live in larger houses.
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******* and Henry (1961) Disengagement Theory
Elderly people are becoming disengaged means that there is more jobs available for the younger people and more voluntary work available.
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Research Methods
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Mayo (1927) - Hawthorne Effect
Conducted research of factors affecting worker's productivity.Told 5 female volunteers about the experiment. Even when he altered the factors to improve and worsen conditions, productivity increased - they tried to please him.
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Durkheims 'suicide' study
Compared official statistics on suicide rates
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Thomas and Znaniecki
Used a total of 764 letters to help identify reasons and personal experiences of migration.
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Laslett (1972)
Used parish records to show that extended families grew during industrialisation in Britain.
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John Scott (1990) - Identified 4 criteria for judging secondary data in general
1- Authentic, 2- Credibility, 3 - Representativeness, 4 - Meaning
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Loban (1974)
Used content analysis gender roles in children's reading schemes - found stereotypes about women's role.
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Best (1995 - Formal Content Analysis)
Counted gender roles of boys and girls in children's books.
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Glaser and Strauss (1967)
Researchers theoretical position will guide what they are interested in studying and the sample you are interested in.
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Card 2


Increase in social acceptance explains the growing trend.


Jeffrey Weeks (1999)

Card 3


Argues that homosexuals are less likely to establish long-term relationships as homosexuality is stigmatised


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Card 4


Claim that the lone parent family was increasingly accepted and is becoming accepted as an alternative to other family structures.


Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5


Single parents contribute to create the underclass and the generous welfare state encourages women to have children that they couldn't afford to support.


Preview of the back of card 5
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