Sociology Unit 1 Revision Guide

17739 words, 71 pages

Intro Sample...

SCLY 1: Families and Households
Revision Notes 2015

By the end of this unit you should be able to

* answer any question on families and households !

Key definitions:

A family is usually a group of people related by marriage or blood.

A household is a person living alone or a group of people living together who may or may not be related.

Theories of the family

From the specification:

The relationship of the family to the social structure and social change

* Functionalist views: the importance of the nuclear family, the universality of the family, changing functions, how the nuclear family ‘fits’ modern society.
* Marxist views: the family as part of the ideological... View More »

Body Sample...

He ignores the possibility of socialisation being a two-way process in which roles are negotiated or that attempts at socialisation can be resisted by children. |
The second basic and irreducible function is the stabilisation of the adult's personality. The family gives the individual adult a 'safetyvalve', a place where she or he can relax, escape the stresses and strains of the world outside and feel emotionally secure. | However, the Marxist Zaretsky argues that the family only provides this emotional support in order to encourage its members to continue to work another day under the harsh realities of capitalism. The family is therefore a servant of the capitalist state which looks after the needs of exploited workers at no cost to employers. |

Talcott Parsons: the theory of ‘fit’ | Evaluation |
Parsons argues that the dominant structure of the family best suits the needs of the economy at the time. This means that nuclear families ‘fit’ an industrial economy because they are geographically mobile and not reliant on wider kin. This is because family members can easily move to new centres of production. Parsons concludes that only the nuclear family could provide the achievement-orientated and geographically mobile workforce required by modern economies. | However, according to Wilmott and Young, the pre-industrial family tended to be nuclear, not extended as claimed by Parsons, with parents and children working together in cottage industries such as weaving. They also argues that the hardship of the early industrialised period gave rise to the ...

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