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Family revision notes for sociology

hannah borrett

on 16 May 2010

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Transcript of Family

Family 3. Structural
in families 1. Family and
Identity 4. Changing
relationships 2. Traditional
structures The development of
individual identity
and social roles
shaped by experiences in society
and who we come in contact with the way others see us
influences how we see ourselves agents of social
control/socialisation Family eduaction peers religion government media law in each agent of social control
we belong to, we learn to play
different social roles; some are
roles we can chose, where as others
are given to us acheived ascribed roles that are given,
e.g. Prince roles that you earn Socialisation the process of learning to
become a member of society Definition
the family is a childs first social group
so this is where primary socialisation
takes place (0-5 years) it is also the "gate keeper" introducing
other agents of socialisation e.g. controling
exposure to certain types of media families teach social NORMS
and societies VALUES the rules within a culture ideas about what is worthwhile
and important in a culture within the family there are
different methods of socialisation role models play deliberate
instruction positive
sanctions negative
sanctions the child copies what it sees
others family members doing
e.g being gentle with a baby the child is given toys or games
which develop skills or social norms
e.g sharing the family tells the child
what, how and why to do
something child is given a reward
for behaving correctly,
so is likely to repeat the
behaviour child is punished for
breaking the families rules,
so is less likely to repeat the
behaviour in the future unsocialised
children children who have had no socialisation
are called ferral children, these children
have either been brought up by animals
or locked away from other people children need good physical care children have the ability to learn
(Kamala and Amala learn from the she-wolf) socialisation is essential in order
to become full members of society some children recover if their early socialisation is disrupted if language learning starts to late then
language might never fully develop Contempary
of the family regualtion
of sex the family has traditionally
controlled sexual behaviour reproduction most children are born
within families, and most
women have children physical care human babies and young
children are very dependant
on others for care, and the
family provides this, also
Britains aging population
requires more physical care
support economic
support socialisation people need to feel
like someone cares for
them, will listen to their
problems and share their
successes, a loving family
can give confidence to a child these days children
being in education longer
means they are most financially
dependant on the family for longer teaching norms
and values of society Criticisms of
family functions Feminists believe that family functions
benefit men, because physical
care and emotional support
are largely provided by women
men benefit more from family life in
terms of health and life expectancy.
this is passed through generations by
gender role socialisation Marxist think that family functions only benefit
upper class and middle class, family
responsibilities keep workers working hard,
so keep them performing the family functions
all in benefit of the bourgeoisie

Households one person living alone
or a group of people who
have the same address
and share either one meal aday
or their living accomodation Family
diversity The traditional
nuclear family In Britain in the 1950's
functionalist and most of
society thought that the
nuclear family (made up of 2
generations, consisting of
parents and children living
together) was the traditional
norm what was the traditional
nuclear family like...? Husbands and wives
had differnt roles The family was
patriarchal (male
dominated) his main
responsibility was
outside the home as the
bread winner the wifes "mother/housewife role"
involeved household work, child care
and providing emotional support feminists criticised the
traditional nuclear family,
they thought that... men dominated their wives the mother/housewife role
was unsatisfying the "happy family" images
hid a "dark side" of domestic
violence women had few choices
as staying single, being a single
parent, or being in a same sex
relationship was considered
deviant The traditional
extended family In Britain in the 1950's
Young and Wilmot, found
that most people belonged
to extended families
(3 generation: grandparents,
parents and children) family
members see each other
frequently, and families were
matrilocal- living near to the wifes
family the disappearance of
traditional families traditional extended
families started to break up
for example, the demolision of
terrace houses, meaning families had
to move apart traditional nuclear families
started to change through the
industrialisation period, where families
began to become horizontally extended (2 generations, children, parents plus aunts and uncles) when people were looking for work Family
types couple families there are now more couple families,
some couples are now delaying having children, some are remaining childless throughout life, and some are childless when their children leave home in 2007, 25% of people lived in couple family households lone parent families most lone parent families result from divorce, separation, or single motherhood, most of the lone parent families are headed by women so greater economic independance is needed from her. it is difficult to generalise about this type of family as situations differ depending on C.A.G.E (social characteristics) feminists see lone parenthood as a good thing, because it stops the exploitation of women in a partnership, although they do take into consideration the problems such as low income, lack of child care support and social disapproval new right has generally been more critical as they say that boys need a positive male role model to copy during socialisation. reconstituted/blended families if a relationship ends children will usually stay with their mother, so in most reconstituted families children live with their biological mother and step-father a positive view sees them as having the opportunity to form a successfull family a negative view points out that a higher than average falure rate, and a risk of conflict between step-parent and step-child beanpole extended familes the shape of extended families is changing as people have fewer children, meaning families are narrower with fewer siblings, aunts and uncles, also people are living longer meaning extended families are becoming taller gay and lesbian
families social attitudes and laws have recently changes, as a result there has been an increase in same sex partnerships and families, the civil partnership act in 2004, gave same sex couples an official ceromony giving them similar rights to hetrosexual married couples Alternatives to
the family "Cared for
children" some children who are unable to live with their natural parents, are raised by foster patents or in childrens homes, there is concern about these childrens life chances in terms of health and employment opportunites in their future Communal
living gives people the advantages and disadvantages of living with a group that is much larger than the typical household, this type of living is rare in Britain in Isreal, Kibubutz members work together on the land, property was shared and the members were given food and other necessities. couples shared a room while children lived separately in childrens houses. although parents had a close relationship with their children, daily child care takes were taken care of, so socialisation was very different. Friends Cross-cultural
evidence Murdock's view Tibetian families Families in
Britain In 1940 Murdock compared 250 different societies and he found the nuclear family in each one. he claimed that nuclear families where found in every culture In some societies the nuclear family was hidden inside much larger extended families showing that culture does influence family life The Nayar
family In India in the 1800's the Nayar has no nuclear families, a women married a "ritual" husband before puberty, but appart from attending his funeral she had no relationship with him She also had upto 12 "visiting" husbands who could spend the night with her, the husband visting would leave his weapons outside so as not to be disturbed, these visting husbands did give gifts but didnt support the wives and children. One husband was required to state that the child was his. This arrangement had advantages: the visiting husbands were soldiers and lived uncertain lives. Polyandry is a rear form of marriage in which a wife may have more than one husband Polygyny is a form of marriage where a husband can have more than one wife, this is common in Islamic societies Polygamy this is the term which includes Polyandry and Polygyny families vary between societies because of different marriage rules... Polyandry was the main form of marriage in rural Tibet, when a women married a man she also married his brothers, this worked well because of strong family bond between brothers The wife had a sexual relationship and treated them equally, the brothers helped with household tasks and took equal care of any children. Children called the oldest brother "father" and the other brothers "uncle" regardless of who the biological father was Minority ethnic groups who come to live in Britain bring their own cultures and distinctive family patterns In many Asian communites patrilocal extended families are traditional, extended families had almost disappeared from the white community but where very common among Bangladeshis In the west-indies one of the most important family types is the mother headed (matriarchal) household. It is also important among the afro-caribbean community in Britain Social class, ethnicity, and family diversity Social class
and family life When social class is measure by occupation of income it influences family life. Income affects the area where people live, their quality of housing and whether they own or rent it. It can also also affect life chances, as a child from a better off family is likely to do better at school and be healthier. Research generally shows that congugal roles are shared more in middle class families, though a recent study suggests that some middle class fathers feel they would suffer "career death" if they became too involved in childcare Ethnicity
and family life It is quite rare for Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, or Indians to live alone, yet quite common for white and black groups to do so Nuclear and extended households, were found most often in the Asian groups, with lone parent families most common in the black community Family life is changing in all ethnic groups and family varies within each ethinic group. However, in some communities there is pressure for young people to follow traditional family norms The effects of
family diversity In the 1950s the family life course was mapped out clearly for most people: grow up in a family, find a partner, marry and live together, have children, children leave home, live with partner until death. Though family diversity gives us much more choice The family life
course Family diversity creates uncertainty as we might experience several different families during our lives, this is because of decisions made my parents and grandparents which can affect children Diversity and society Family life is changing rapidly in Britain, but people still disagree about the effects on society of increased family diversity for example, it has an effect as the life expectancy of married man is different to a single or divorced man New Right sociologists who see the traditional nuclear family as the best model see diversity as a problem. Feminist sociologists think that family diversity reduces problems such as domestic violence and the "dark side" of the traditional family. Postmodernist sociologists don't make judgements about which family type is "better" they just regard each one as "different" Conjugal roles The roles of husbands and wives, or couples who are living together as partners. Since the 1800 the conjugal roles became very different or segregated, husbands where the "bread winners" whilst married women had the "mother-housewife" role Young and Wilmot, in 1973 said that conjugal roles where becoming symetrical, the "symetrical family" was different to the traditional nuclear and extended family. It was nuclear, just parents and dependent children It was privatised-cut off from relatives and neighbours It was symetrical-the husband and wife had similar roles Young and Wilmot found that the symetrical family had similar but not identical roles, e.g. more wives had paid work and husbands were spending more time at home, however husbands were still the main bread winner and wives took the main role at home Ann Oakley , a feminist sociologist in 1974 felt that Young and Wilmot had exaggerated "symmetry" in conjugal roles Privatised family: no extended family availiable to help Why have conjugal
roles become similar? Changing attitudes: marriage is seen more as a partnership Changing laws: womens legal rights make them more equal partners Comfortable homes: men have become more home centred Fewer children: womens lives are no longer dominated by childbearing and childcare Feminisation of the workforce: more women have paid employment Earning money In the 19th Century, married women and mothers left the work force, though in the late 20th Century they started going back. There are many reasons for this... The growth of service sector jobs and of part time jobs Laws giving women equal rights at work High levels of educational acheivement and changing priorities of girls Dissatisfaction with the "mother-housewife" role Reliable contraception to limit family size The growth of comsumerism Longer life expectancy Problems for women The part time trap: a situations where the part time worker is still expected to do the domestic tasks, because she is only working "part time" The duel burden: a situation where a womens job simply adds to the responsibilites they already have, giving them multiple roles in the house The triple shift: where women have paid work, housework, childcare plus "emotional work" Lagged adaption: Gershuny in 1992 gave an optimistic view saying that men are taking on a greater share of household tasks. The term "lagged adaption" shows the time lag between women becoming more involved at work and men spending time at home Househusbands In some cases the women is the main bread winner and the man stays at home, although this is still rare The Time Use Surveys (2000, 2005) show... At all ages women spend longer on household tasks than men Gender affects which tasks are carried out due to gender socialisation When working hours of men and women are compared on average men and women both do similar amounts, though men spend longer in paid employment as women do housework The time men and women spent on household tasks fell between 2001 and 2005 Variations in conjugal roles Age, health, ethnic group, social class, occupation and stage of the life course can all influence how couples organise their conjugal roles The main conclusions from research into conjugal roles are.. They are more equal today Inequalities remain in relationships Conjugal roles vary within families depending on circumstance Childcare and decision making Studies generally show that men are more involved with their children today, thought feminists suggest that men are more likely to help with more enjoyable tasks. Edgell in 1980, studies decision making in a small group of middle class families and found that major decisions were most often made by men. Though recently it seems that more women are having influence on important decisions Relationships between parents and children The "dark side" of the family Children are more likely to survive childhood as infant mortality rates are low Children are more likely to be cared for by a non-parent in their early years and later in life have a say in family decisions Children are more likely to have better living conditions depending on their parents financially for longer Children are more likely to have parental supervision due to safety concerns Children are more likely to spend all or part of their childhood in a reconstituted, single parent or same sex family Children are more likely to experience the breakdown of their parents relationship and less likely experience death of a parent Social class differences remain as middle class children are likely to be better housed with older parents who are healthier and sometimes provide access to boarding school boomerang a family in which non dependent children return home to live with their parents, generally after university Ethinic differences are also evident, for example children in asian communities are more likely to be part of extended families, to have more siblings and to have parents who remain married Gender differences also remain, for example in the amount of domestic tasks children are expected to do Child abuse Domestic violence is threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psycholoical, emotional, physical, sexual or financial) commited by a family memeber against another Domestic violence Measuring domestic violence Official crime statistics are not very helpful because there is no crime called "domestic violence" and also they only show the "tip of the iceburg" because not all domestic violence is reported The British Crime Survey gives a more accurate picture as it asks victims to record any "frightening threats and/or physical assults" Violent men Most serious and repeated domestic violence is commited by men against women with an average of 2 women killed each week by their partner or ex-partner Rather than blaming individual men, feminists blame a patriarchal society as it allows men to have unrealistic expectations of their partners and allows them to think violence can "control" the family New concerns Male victims and violent women: male victims, like female victims often stay with their partner risking "repeat victimisation" men also worry that the police won't take them seriously. Violence in same sex relationships: Catherine Donovan in 2007 found that 40% of women and 35% of men in same sex relationships had experienced abuse, with emotional abuse being most common "Honour" based violence: this occurs in communities where familys can be shamed if a member disobeys their parents or becomes to "westernised" this violence might be carried out by several family members Although most public concern is about "stranger danger" and "paedophiles" some children are abused by their own families. The four main types of child abuse are neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse and emotional abuse Harm caused to a child or young person under the age of 18 by an adult On average, one child under 10 is killed each week usually by a parent, the parents partner or another relative. Parents rights are also a concern as some parents find it difficult to get children back after "experts" wrongly accuse them of harming children Do children ever abuse their parents? Help the Aged 2006 report on elder abuse suggested that 46% of abusers where the victims relatives with 25% being the sons or daughters making it another dark side of the family Divorce Legal
change Changing
attitudes Divorce has become easier, cheaper and quicker. The 1969 Divorce Reform Act allowed couples to divorce if they could show that their marriage had broken down. The 1984 Family Law Act allowed couples to aply for divorce after one year of marriage instead of the previous three Divorce has become more acceptable as it has become more common, in a more secular society (not ruled by religious beliefs) fewer people see marriage as a religious commitment Changing
expectations People are expecting more from marriage today, so disapointment is more likely instead of life time commitment they are more likely to ask "is this marriage working for me?" this approach is called "confluent love" Changing role of women Women combining work and employment gives them a dual burden so wives are less dependent on their husbands family resourses are divided on divorce and womens employment opportunities have improved Longer life expectancy Effects how couples look at their relationship Isolation Lack of children If a marriage has problems, then family members do not live close and cannot support them Having fewer children, or no children means there is less to keep a couple together The effects divorce on children Short-term distress is common among children There is a risk of long-term problems e.g. poorer; health, educational acheivement, behaviour and income The childs age and gender do not affect the outcome of divorce Parents ability to cope, the amount of family conflict and the quality of contact with the absent parent do affect the outcome Are friends the new family for some people today? Is the boundary between friends, sexual partners and family bluring? Although friends are important friendship does not give the same legal rights and responsibilities as marriage and parenthood
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