University of Essex, Colchester Campus
Name: EVELYN OFOSUHEMMA ADJEI
Registration No: 120414
Module Code and Title: SC111 Sociology and the Mordern Word Class teacher: DR Carlos Gigoux
Full title of essay: The Effect of Industrialisation on the Structure of the Family; Changes in family and Household structure over Degree Course and Year: BA Sociology and Management Year 1
Academic year: 2012/13
The Effect of Industrialisation on the Structure of the Family; Changes in family and Household structure over Time. By
There have been changes between generations of family structure and family roles over the years. Both my great grandparents are Ghanaians. They had twelve children, my grandma being the youngest. In those days, houses in Ghana were largely built and accommodated every member of the extended family. Their main idea and aim of living together under one roof was to give care, support and perpetuate their cultural heritage. They provided each other with physical needs, emotional and economic support, meeting the basic human needs for food, shelter and intimacy. Since hunting and gathering could not feed the whole family, they resulted to farming. Agriculture was their main source of work and income. It brought a very significant amount of produce to feed the entire extended family. The men were actively involved in farm work, particularly in the growing of crops and rearing of animals. The men ensured that the supply of food was evenly shared to the family members, whiles the women stayed home and performed household duties like cooking, cleaning, caring for the children and the elderly among other functions. My great grandparents made sure that the married couples procreate and socialise the next generation to perpetuate the society’s cultural heritage, traditions, practises, values, language, and so on. In addition, they ensured that the security of every member of the family was achieved, as well seeing to it that the new generations were nurtured and rooted in the customs and norms of the society. My great-grandfather passed away at the age of 110, and my great-grandmother at the age of 115 respectively. In their old age, my mother, among other siblings - including those from external branches of the family – provided support for them in their daily activities such as personal care. My grandparents were both traders; they were into the exportation and importation of farm produce to various parts of the world. My mother being the eldest of six children helped my grandparents in the running of the business. Moreover, my grandparents, being the head of the family, provided moral guidance and ensured that members of the family lived harmoniously with each other. This resulted in us spending more quality time with one another, promoting unity, integration and thereby fostering happiness. In addition to all these, my grandparents also assisted to the other mothers in the community in their support for the daily needs of the younger ones. My grandfather died peacefully, at the age of 96. His death really had a devastating impact on my grandmother since they performed various family functions together. She was later diagnosed with depression and dementia, which worsened with age. My mother with her other siblings took turns in caring for her until she passed away at the age of 95.
After the death of my grandparents, my mother married and divorced six years after. Her other five siblings also married and migrated from the village and are now scattered across Europe, America and Asia. Subsequently, my mother relocated to live in Germany and left me in the care of my father who later remarried twice and had two children with each woman.
Fifteen years ago, I got married, moved out of Ghana and have since lived in Colchester with my family. Though I am now separated from my...
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