Survey of Family Life
A social institution is an organized pattern of beliefs and behaviors centered on basic human needs. Family is a major social institution in our society that controls how children are brought up, and are taught how to behave and act in the world. It is a major support system, and a guide to be introduced into our society. In our Society today, when people are asked what a family is, there are many different responses. Because of the media, people often associate what they think is a family is through their favorite television shows, books, and magazines. The problem with programs such as Family Ties, or the Cosby show is that they don't always portray or provide realistic views. Through a survey given to ten random people at Merrimack College, I concluded that families differ in many ways whether it's through marriage or divorce, decision making, and family unity. One type of family that is typically portrayed by the Media is the nuclear family. A nuclear family is a married couple and their unmarried children living together. From the nuclear family, many larger family groups can be formed. Demonstrated by my survey I found that the average nuclear family has about four members. My survey also showed that the amount of blood related siblings living in the same household was about two per family. Among the nuclear family there is also extended family, where relatives live in the same home as parents and their children. The results from my survey presented that not many people have extended family, but the extended family that does exist consists mainly of grandparents. There are advantages to the extended family over the nuclear family, such as more emotional, physical, and economical support for the family as a whole. In the television show Family Matters, extended family is demonstrated when the grandmother comes to live with "Winslows". She was portrayed as a loving person who was always there to listen to her family's...
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