Using Material from Item a and Elsewhere, Assess the Contribution of Functionalism to Our Understanding of Families and Households..

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Using material from item A and elsewhere, assess the contribution of functionalism to our understanding of families and households.. The consensus view of the role of the family is taken by functionalist, they believe it is a universal institution in which provided and performs essential functions which are needed for society as a whole as well as the family members. Parsons believe in a functional fit, this is within the nuclear family, as it fits into modern society and society’s needs as it is a family which keep up with society’s geographically and socially mobile labour force, critics of this argue that parsons is wrong with this idea of relationship between industrialisation and family structure. Marxist has different views as he believe the family are serving the economic and ideological needs for capitalism, the feminist view sees family serving not the ideological needs of capitalism but the needs of a man and the patriarchal control of woman. All of the following, Marxist, liberal and radical feminist believe in different causes of woman’s oppression and how it could be overcome. Alongside this all of the Marxist and other feminist views have all been criticised as they all have forgotten or ignored that fact that family diversity and individual’s capacity to choose the family arrangement. Within item A we are shown that according to functionalist sociologist it is believe that the family is the key institution within society. As the family performs vital functions to maintain society and benefit the whole of the society and its members. According to George peter Murdock, this provides a stable satisfaction of the sex drive and this then avoids social disruption and conflict which could be caused by a sexual ‘free for all’ in conjunction the family reproduce the future generation which ensures the continuity of the of society with time. Although not everyone agrees with the functionalist view of the family and its roles, as Marxist and feminist reject...
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