7 September 2016
Often hard to define because there are so many different kinds of families. Also difficult to study — our personal experiences can lead to bias in research. First started studying families in the early 20th century
problem: almost all of those who were studying families were mainly men who often attended very prestigious schools, many of whom came from native-born protestant families. Most hadn’t grown up in extreme
poverty. This is the difficulty in early research: personal bias played a big role in their studies
Our “common sense” beliefs about family are often based on our own experiences. These beliefs are usually too narrow.
Peer reviewed research helps remedy our blind spots and personal biases that might affect research, as others who have other experiences can tell where we have ignored, overlooked, or focused on specific aspects.
If you want to learn more check out In anarchic situation how can you build up defense with creating spiral towards conflict?
Families tend to be idealized in our society
Before the 19th century, families were not idealized so much. Families had for a long time been mixed with people you weren’t related to, distant family members, etc.
Focus used to be mostly on mothers and not so much fathers
Until the late 19th century, bad families were not talked about. It was taboo. 1970’s was when people began to talk openly about family problems (incest, drug abuse, child abuse, etc.)
Until then, it was difficult for researchers to ask questions about these kinds of issues. So early research, with personal biases and taboo topics such as abuse, was not super effective
Lower income families tend to be more open about their issues as they are more often in touch with police, etc. Higher income families tend to be more private as they seek the help of counselors and psychologists.
Families are seen as private, and that makes it difficult to study them We also discuss several other topics like What are our closest living relatives?
If you want to learn more check out What is the cell wall of bacteria?
Don't forget about the age old question of What happens when atoms share electrons equally?
“it’s a family problem”
This is much different than centuries ago, as communities used to be very involved with families and there was very little privacy. Wives and children and husbands would often be chastised by elders in these communities if they were not acting according to what the community saw as the standard of their duties.
The functionalist definition — what does the family DO for society?
Functional requisites for the survival of society: If you want to learn more check out Ow do you use dimensional analysis to convert between units?
thought these aspects were fundamental for the continuation of society reproduction: replace dying members We also discuss several other topics like What is the function of the simple columnar epithelium?
economic support: making and distributing goods and services
placement of new members into the social order
to socialize (train) new members