Characteristics of families today:
It is the most basic social unit upon which is a society is built Each member consists of a specific role in the family
e.g. Men are usually seen as the bread winners whereas women are seen to have the prime responsibility of managing household chores.
Modern nuclear families shaped by sentiments such as
1) romantic love between couples
2) idea that women have a maternal instinct and a need to reproduce and care for young children and
3) domesticity (the belief that relationships within family are more binding than those outside it)
Usually consists of 2 parents (a mother and a father) and 2 or 3 children. This is the composition of most families today.
Functions/Outcomes of family:
1) Provide emotional support/ happiness
2) Financial security
3) To raise a family effectively
4) To teach values or impart and perpetuate the traditions and cultures Families are groups in which people come together to form a strong primary group connection, maintaining emotional ties to one another over a long period of time.
What is the need for a family (importance of family)?
It is from within a family that a new member of society learns about the wider world outside, and is prepared for his or her own part in it
The need for families is so universal. The main task of the family is to ensure that certain aspects of life, the most obvious reason being the biological need for reproduction, are preserved and will go on into the future.
Families exist to provide a stable and secure environment for children to be born and brought up in.
The family teaches us the rules of behaviors at a very early stage which allows us to live in a society in an orderly way. This is mainly because our social life is far more patterned and organized than we realize.
Our ideas and values are also shaped by the family.
Family provides financial support for its members.
Where children are neglected by families due to their inability to support them, some children are brought up in institutions such as children’s homes. Children are also advertised in newspaper columns in the hope that families will come forward to foster or adopt them. This reflects the widespread belief in our society that the family is the setting that children should grow up in.
This is the conventional model of a family that has been generally agreed upon. However, its relevance has become questionable with the rise of competitive models of family today. Conventional Model
Marriage - The conventional model of marriage
can be defined as a legal union between two
members of the opposite sex, traditionally based
on a sexual relationship.
A family should consist of a husband, wife and
children. (In a 2010 survey, conducted by the
university professors at University of Indiana,
99.8% of participants agreed that family consists
of husband, wife and children)
Having Children. i.e. There is a need for
procreation and hence, the establishment of a
family is necessary
(In the same survey, it was revealed that children
tend to be the key indicator in establishing
“family” status as the % of individuals who
agreed that unmarried couples and gay couples
constitute a family nearly doubled when children
were added. )
Cohabitation without getting married e.g
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt
Increasingly, more couples want to enjoy their
relationship by cohabiting with minimal
commitment and responsibility.
Couples still want to raise a family without
(2010 Survey by University of Indiana, 83% and
64% people agree that unmarried couples and
gay couples with children still constitute a family
There is a deviation from this model with the rise
of single parent household and homosexual
couples without children or adopting children
with a desire to raise a family.
(In the same survey, 92 % stated that husband
and wife without...
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