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midterm 1 class notes

midterm 1 class notes - Week 1 9/3 Overview of Family...

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Week 1 – 9/3 Overview of Family Issues We naturally take families for granted, the roles they play are invisible until something changes or something bad happens o This quality is important because it exists when a family is performing it’s functions o Only during a crisis are roles recognized The family has maintained many original functions o Produces and socializes children o Unit of economic cooperation o Significant roles o Source of intimacy Modern society has altered many of these functions through adjustments to contemporary society o Society idealizes the nuclear family (parents + children) o Any variation is judged as a declined variation o We often fail to appreciate the network of kin Families are responsible for much of our identity, who we are and who we will be, despite our feelings for them Main characteristics were developed in prehistoric times o Now, the family unit undergoes alterations o The traditional nuclear family has become a minority Ex: the dual worker and dual earner family, women are waiting longer for children, women are having less children if any, divorce rates are high These changes do not signify the end of the family, they are signs of resiliency because families still carry out their duties Week 2 – 9/8 and 9/10 The Family First, we broke up in to small groups and came up with our own definitions of traditional marriage, contemporary marriage, traditional family, and contemporary family Textbook definitions: Traditional marriage: public ritual, socially recognized, cooperate in economic matters, united sexually, union between man and woman, children have legal rights, assumed to be permanent Traditional family: married couple or group of adult kin who cooperate and divide labor along gender lines, raise children, and share a common dwelling place o Many new family patterns have come in to existence Video: “Heart of the Matter” @ equalitymaryland.org Family Functions Produces and socializes children
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o In the past, reproduction was an essential part of marriage and only happened between a man and a woman with biological children o In 1978, the first test tube baby was born These procedures are not rare anymore o Teaching the child how to be human and interact with society is called socialization or ‘people-making’ This is traditionally a family role Recently, this role has been moving far away from the family – the state now has a large role because of education and now that more women are working young children go to daycare o ½ children between ages 3-5 are going to school, daycare, etc o Watching tv is the most important activity for children up to age 14 Acts as a unit of economic cooperation o Historically, labor was divided among family lines with gender roles Men have usually worked outside the home and women were housewives There’s no real reason that these roles can’t be reversed because they’re assigned by culture, not biology
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