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Themes of love and protection. The famiy provides a safe-haven from the threats and dangers of modern society.
Family provides satisfactions and members can find self-fulfillment and enjoyment through their joint activities. For example: Life goals.
Negative image. Inhibits self-expression and personal freedom.
Stable and Harmonious Family of the Past
Families of the past were more stable and happier than those of today.
Myth of Separate Worlds
Belief that work and family roles are mutually exclusive.
3 Distinctive Features of Monolithic Family Form
- 1. Family as a nuclear unit.
- 2. Consists of a mother, father, and their children.
- 3. Exhibits a sexual division of labor-- Breadwinner father and fulltime wife & mother.
-- distinction between family and household.
Unified Family Experience
Assumes all family members have common needs, interests, and experiences.
Family as a gendered institution
Gender as a basic organizing theme in families.
Assumes that families operate on the principles of harmony and love. Example: Soulmates.
Family Decline as the Cause of Social Problems
Change in family patterns in recent decades is the primary cause of contemporary social problems.
Focuses on the structural sources of family life.
Two sociological principles
- 1. Close relationship between families and the larger society that shapes them.
- 2. Views social inequality as akey determinant of family diversity.
basic assumptions about the world and how it works.
The Shifting Terrain of Family Studies
The dominant approach or paradigm in the past for understanding families has been a functionalist model.
New ideas about pluralism, diversity, and social context have challenged that model.
The Structural Diversity Approach
- 1. Family forms are socially constructed and historically changing.
- 2. Family diversity is produced by the very structures that organize society.
- 3. Social Location in which families are embedded are result of intersection power systems.
- 4. Family Diversity is constructed through social structure and human agency.
- 5. Understanding family diversity requires the use of wide-ranging intellectual tradtions.
- The conditions for a family within a social structure.
- -- Class, race, and gender are key elements.
Process by which people actively adapt and react to changing social cirumstances and conditions.