The Changing of American Families

Topics: Family, Mother, Marriage Pages: 3 (1044 words) Published: December 12, 2005
The Changing of American Families
Television reflects how American families are viewed. Leave it to Beaver and The Brady Bunch were the ideal families in the 1960's and 1970's, and in the 80's, it was Family Ties. When the 1990's approached us, television shows took on a whole new outlook on American Families. There were shows such as Full House, which was about a single father raising three daughters with the help of his brother-in-law and his best friend. Roseanne was also another show that showed the "dysfunctional" side of families. American Families keep changing, and they will continue to change in our future. Topics such as the changes in family logistics are important to be informed about in this day and age. Therefore, it is important to know about all sorts of families because they exist differently as they did in past centuries. As talked about in the previous paragraph there are many different scenarios for families. Examples in variation of family are homosexuality, divorced parents, single parent families, and children growing up with both parents working. With the end of World War II, families were developing all over. Ideal families in the fifties consisted of a working father, a mother who was a housewife, and a few children. Many men joined unions to take care of their families, where they were able to receive pensions and health benefits. The government also supported most families with their financial situation after the war had ended. Although the "ideal" family life was pleasing, it did not last very long. According to Pauline Irit Erera in What Is A Family, "The main reason for family change was the breakdown of the postwar social compact between government, corporations, and workers" (Erera 353). As the sixties came along, the economy grew worse. "Public policies aggravated these problems by cutting taxes, for corporations and the wealthy while cutting spending for services, public works, and investments in human...

Bibliography: Coontz, S. (1997). The way we really are: Coming to terms with America 's changing families. New York: Basic Books.
Erera, Pauline Irit. "What is a Family". Writing in the Disciplines: A Reader for Writers. Mary Lynch Kennedy et al. Pearson. Upper Saddle. 2004. 350-364.
Stacey, J. (1996). In the name of the family: Rethinking family values in the postmodern age. Boston: Beacon.
Wright, C., & Jagger, G. (1999). End of Century, End of Family? Shifting discourses of family "crisis." In G. Jagger & C. Wright (Eds.), Changing Family Values
(pp. 17-37). London: Routledge.
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