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Unformatted text preview: What is family and how do sociologists study it? do
Monday October 29 Merriam-Webster on Family Merriam-Webster 1: a group of individuals living under one roof and usually under one head : household household 2 a: a group of persons of common ancestry : clan b: a people or group of peoples clan regarded as deriving from a common stock : race race 3 a: a group of people united by certain convictions or a common affiliation : fellowship b: the staff of a high official (as the President) fellowship 4: a group of things related by common characteristics: as a: a closely related series of elements or chemical compounds b: a group of soils with similar chemical and of physical properties (as texture, pH, and mineral content) that comprise a category ranking above the series and below the subgroup in soil classification c: a group of ranking related languages descended from a single ancestral language related 5 a: the basic unit in society traditionally consisting of two parents rearing their children; also : any of various social units differing from but regarded as equivalent also to the traditional family <a single-parent family> b: spouse and children <want to family spend more time with my family> family 6 a: a group of related plants or animals forming a category ranking above a genus and below an order and usually comprising several to many genera bin livestock and in breeding (1): the descendants or line of a particular individual especially of some breeding outstanding female (2): an identifiable strain within a breed outstanding 7: a set of curves or surfaces whose equations differ only in parameters 8: a unit of a crime syndicate (as the Mafia) operating within a geographical area American Academy of Family Physicians on Family Physicians The family is a group of individuals with a The continuing legal, genetic and/or emotional relationship. Society relies on the family group to provide for the economic and protective needs of individuals, especially children and the elderly. (1984) (2003) Sociology on Family Sociology There is a wide variety of family structures Rather than taking a structural approach to Rather defining family, sociologists view family as a set of practices, relationships, and practices identifications identifications Family is currently defined as people who Family consider themselves related by blood, marriage, or adoption marriage, They may or may not live together (i.e., be a part of a They household) household) Family Structures Family Nuclear – husband, wife, child(ren) Extended – nuclear + other relatives Extended Polygyny – marriage of one man to multiple Polygyny women women Polyandry – marriage of one woman to Polyandry multiple men multiple Polygamy – general term for multiple spouses Family Structures? Family Polyamory – overarching term Polyamory for people who practice “many loves” Commitment Ceremony – gay Commitment wedding without the legal sanction sanction Handfasting – Pagan wedding, Handfasting may or may not have legal sanction sanction Is legal sanction a prerequisite for status as family? Functionalist Perspective Families serve six basic needs:
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Economic production Socialization of children Care of sick and elderly Recreation Sexual control Reproduction Reproduction Symbolic Interactionist Perspective Symbolic The closer in earnings between spouses, the The closer in hours spent on household chores (though it still is not equal) (though When husbands get laid off, most do LESS When housework than before housework Husbands who earn less than their wives do Husbands the least amount of housework Conflict Perspective Conflict Family and marriage is patriarchal Family Housework is still disproportionately done by Housework women, even when both spouses work fullwomen, time. time. Women still put in 7.5 more hours than men Women per week doing housework (11 hrs if children are involved) are Second Shift (Hochschild) Why do women still do more housework? housework? Different perceptions of how much work is being Different done done Gendered beliefs about who does what Blaming personal characteristics of individuals Blaming Belief that because men make more money, Belief women should pick up the “slack” with additional labor labor What are the outcomes of the “second shift”? “second Marital strain – fighting over chores, divorce Poor sex life – men who do housework report more Poor frequent sexual activity; men purporting to be feminists report more frequent and pleasurable sexual activity; women who feel overwhelmed by childcare and chores report less interest in sex and Psychological effects - Women who believe in Psychological equality BUT do not have equal marriages report lower self-esteem lower How men respond How Some men increase their labor around the Some house house Most engage in one or more “strategies of Most resistance” resistance” Waiting it out Playing dumb Needs reduction Substitute offerings ...
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This document was uploaded on 02/17/2011.
- Fall '08