SOCY 305 Notes (2/16/16 - 2/18/16)
SOCY 305 Notes (2/16/16 - 2/18/16) SOCY 305 001
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SOCY 305 001
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This 8 page Class Notes was uploaded by Julia Lensch on Sunday February 21, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOCY 305 001 at University of South Carolina taught by Jennifer M. Augustine in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 28 views. For similar materials see Sociology of the Family in Sociology at University of South Carolina.
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Date Created: 02/21/16
Family Structure and Formation: Divorce 3 Eras of Divorce: (Andrew Cherlin) 1. Era of Divorce – Restricted Until middle 19 century Divorces were usually granted under certain criteria (adultery, desertion, nonsupport, mental cruelty) 2. Era of Tolerance Middle 19 century to 1970 Divorce became accessible to women as will Prove your partner was emotionally abusive: o Adultery, desertion, nonsupport, mental cruelty (Era of Divorce Tolerance: rise in companionate marriage partners inspired to come up with rationale even if didn't meet them in society) 3. Era of Unrestricted Divorce "No-Fault Divorce" (no longer necessary you meet criteria for the divorces to be legalized) Either party could do it First enacted in California Last state to adopt "No-Fault Divorce" => NY (2010) Movement Towards Unrestricted Divorce, but shift into more restrictive marriage --> Covenant Marriage: forfeiting right to a "no-fault" marriage (Arizona, Arkansas, Louisiana) Divorce Today About 42-46% of all marriages end in divorce As number of marriages increase, divorce rates increase 1. Demographic Factors Associate with Divorce Age (younger you marry, increased likelihood of divorce) Education (lower educated, increased divorce rates) Race/ethnic differences (background) Interracial/Interethnic couples have increase in divorce Men's unemployment --> big increase in divorce Non-marital fertility (increase in divorce) Duration (risk of divorce highest during first 7 years) Interfaith Marriages (negotiate between 2 religious communities => conflict) Poverty (income increased, risk of divorce decreased) Prior marriage Risk Factors of Divorce 2. Premarital Cohabitation => increase risk of divorce Inertia takes hold in relationships Self-selection --> people with certain characteristics select into different social statuses 3. Women's Employment Women's economic independence More conflict in families where women work, BUT Women's wages also stabilize families Date suggests employment associated with divorce only in unhappy marriages Women were working and had financial means to get a divorce if they were unhappy Interpersonal Risk Factors Domestic violence Frequent conflict Infidelity Weak decrease in commitment Decreased level of trust Number of relationship problems Broad Scale Explanation for Increase in Divorce Changes in women's employment "No-Fault" Marriage Individualism (marriage is part of your life journey, provide you with individual satisfaction and accomplishment) Majority of people are more accepting of divorce Norms around social structure are loosening Women's work Feminist movement/gender consciousness o Gave women increase in power/agency o More demand to even out levels of labor in the house These risk factors remain pretty consistent predictors of divorce => "the emerging story" … divorce rates decline for the most educated (second level of education), but remain high for the non educated group (high school graduates only) What else is causing divorce? Money, employment Increase reservation wage for marriage (higher education, less conflict) Reversal of liberal attacks Increase earning women --> more selective (better matches, less conflict) Less uncertainty in marriage (changing expected utility of divorce) Less normative, more sanctioned (more valued behavior) Educational Crossover 4 year college degree people are more liberal than ones who haven't gone to college These are now women Consequences of Divorce for Kids Research tells us: Academic outcomes (drop out, lower grades) Alcohol use and delinquency More adjustment problems and depression Increase risk of divorce as adults Clinical and adult conflicts More emotional detachment from parents Divorce and Child's Well-Being Cause negative consequences: o Conflict o Residential move o Less interaction with non-resident parent (mainly dad --> less father interaction) o Financial hit (usually women hurt more financially) o Generally referred to as the stress-adjustment period) Theoretical Perspectives 1. Divorce associated with period of crisis Shock Life changes dramatically Kids who experience this divorce, and period of crisis, but they bounce back easier 2. Chronic Strain 3. Multiple Transition Perspective If you divorce, your likelihood of living with another person Risk for multiple transitions => lower outcomes for kids Good Divorces for Kids: Selective Problem (twin studies and fixed effects and lagged outcomes) Consequences for adults Health problems (depression and anxiety) Turned most Americans greedy Experience of failed marriage Cohabitation Arrangement when two people aren't married but are romantically involved New family arrangement Not a norm for our parents generation Norms against pre-marital/sexual relationships Changed due to birth control o --> Women didn't have to worry about getting pregnant Sexual revolution o --> Enlightenment/restrictions were looser Feminist movement o --> Women given sexual agency Increased secularization (moving away from religious tradition) Why People Cohabit? See if you are compatible with that person You have options (don't have to be single nor married) Not as much of a commitment (easier to exit) Less stigma Theories 1 – cohabitation => trial marriage 2 – cohabitation => step to marriage 3 – cohabitation => alternative to marriage 4 – cohabitation => alternative to being single Theory 1 An opportunity to assess their stability and compatibility with their partner Expect that people would have increased divorce rates Higher risk of marriage Theory 2 Engagement period Waiting to get financially secure, finish education Theory 3 Norms around marriage --> weakening Benefits of marriage are easily accessible while cohabiting People don't see necessity of marrying 40% of all nonmarital births are from cohabiters On average, 1/6 of all cohabiters last less than 3 years On average, 1/10 of all cohabiters last less than 5 years Theory 4 You can be single or you can cohabit Benefits of living with somebody Share expenses Closer proximity with person you are with (sexual relationship) Offers more freedom, operates on principal of equality o --> not permanent Why do we see this trend? People want benefits of being in a relationship, but offers more freedom/flexibility to have your own pursuits Delays in marriage Violation of social norms to get married young Feedback loop --> people more nervous about marriages not working out, so they cohabit People perceive economic barriers o --> People wait until they achieve economic stability Where does cohabitation fit into the contemporary U.S. family system? => we don't know It carries a more diverse meaning whereas in other countries, it's an institution Incomplete Institution Not governed by formal laws Operate on equality amongst partners o Equality promotes stability, however promote instability among marital couples Less homogamy (similarities between partners, similar traits) o --> Less in cohabitation than in marital unions Might date someone (older, different religious views), but won't marry them 2 Reasons Why People are Cohabiting before Marriage 1. Economic 2. Relationship Factors Economic-Related Themes: 1. Financial stability (economic threshold) (having enough money) 2. Wanted money for a wedding (church wedding) 3. Having package deal (achieving a set of financial goals) (i.e. buying a house, getting out of debt, finishing school) 4. Man's capacity to be an economic provider (supported by quantitative research) (still expectation that men are the financial breadwinners) 5. Money = conflict (people expressed desire for money to have a wedding, car, pay off debt, and be stress-free Reading People aren't marrying because the expectations are so high Cohabiting allows us the feel of a marriage without the permanence and gives us more freedom Other Important Issues: It's connection to divorce It's effects on kids: o 40% kids live in a cohabiting family o Fewer economic resources (less pooling of resources) (more money, marriage) (less money, cohabiting) o Less parental cooperation and more conflict Importance of gender equality and diversity o Cohabiters more liberal o Diversion of labor --> more equal compared to marrieds o Less shared income
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