SOCI 316 - Part 1 Beginnings.docx - SOCI 316 Part 1...

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SOCI 316 - Part 1 Beginnings Unit 1 - Definitions, Gender and Social ContextsDefining FamilyTraditionally: both by law and social science say that the family consists of people related by blood, marriage or adoptionCommon household, economic interdependence, and sexual and reproductive relationsNew developments: common-law marriages, same-sex marriageOfficial canadian definition of Census Family: a now married couple (with or without never-married children of either or both spouses), a couple living common-law (again…), or a lone parent of any marital status, with at least 1 never-married children living in the same dwelling. Burgess and Locke definition: a group of persons united by the ties of marriage, blood, or adoption: constituting a single household; interacting and communicating with each other in their respective social roles (husband, wife, mother and father, son and daughter, brother and sister) Saw family as a primary group: describe any group in which there is a close, face-to-face relationshipAs a whole human being (laugh, cry, shared experiences)Being accepted and liked for what we areLimitations: does not account for spontaneity, individuality and intimacy. As well, not all family are blood related or related by adoption. The definition of a household does not account for uncles, aunts, extended kinetc. (p.4)Nuclear family (modern family) vs. postmodern family Today we have liberated the word family, it doesn’t have the same strict guidelines it traditionally once held. (fluid concept)Constitution Act: Federal (marriage and divorce - custody included) and Provincial (adoption, matrimonial, guardianship and licensing valid marriage ceremonies)In the past…Laws said the labour and services of a wife belonged to her husband as arightUnder common law wives did not exist as independent beings (husband and wife are one person)Under matrimonial law the husband assumed ownership of wife’s personal property (only recompense was dower - in the event the husband dies)Upon separation, children were the husbands property as wellStarting 1970s, reforms have altered the formerly harsh legal position of married womenLegal rules today are gender neutral (no more husbands and wives, only spouses)
Martha Bailey uses this definition of family: A family is any sexually expressive or parent-child or other kin relationship in which people, usually related by ancestry, marriage or adoption, (1) form a economic unit and care for any young, (2) consider their identity to be significantly attached to the group, and (3) are committed to maintaining that group overtime.Comines practical and objective criteria with a more social-psychological sense of family identityThe Freedom and Pressures of ChoosingMany people examine their decisions about family all throughout their lives, assessing and reevaluation relationships. (making choices an important topic)It is best to make knowledgeable choices, knowing about the alternatives

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