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Family Notes

by: Asif Khan

Family Notes SOC 201S

Asif Khan

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About this Document

Notes from Professor Lopez's lecture on family.
Class Notes
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This 8 page Class Notes was uploaded by Asif Khan on Monday November 23, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to SOC 201S at Old Dominion University taught by JONATHAN W LOPEZ in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 17 views. For similar materials see AN INTRODUCTION TO SOCIOLOGY in Sociology at Old Dominion University.

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Date Created: 11/23/15
Family Notes Global View of the Family gt Substantive Definition of the FamilyBased on blood shared genetic heritage and law social recognition and affirmation of the bond 0 Boundaries are clear 0 Enables tracking of who is related to whom over time gt Kinship Patterns 0 KinshipState of being related to others culturally learned I Bilateral DescentBoth sides of a person s family are regarded as equally important in determining kinship I Patrilineal DescentOnly father s relatives are important I Matrilineal DescentOnly mother s relatives are important gt Family Types 0 Extended FamilyFamily in which relativessuch as grandparents aunts or uncleslive in same household as parents and their children 0 Nuclear FamilyMarried couple and their unmarried children living together I Married couples with children under 18 make up roughly 29 of all US families I Percentage of singleparent and nonfamily households has risen steadily over the past 50 years gt Types of Marriage 0 MonogamyForm of marriage in which one woman and one man are married only to each other I Serial MonogamyWhen a person has several spouses in his or her lifetime but only one spouse at a time o PolygamyForm of marriage in which an individual may have several husbands or wives simultaneously I PolygynyForm of polygamy in which a man may have more than one wife at the same time I PolyandryForm of polygamy in which a woman may have more than one husband at the same time gt What Families Do 0 Functionalist Definition of FamiliesDefinition of families that focuses on what families do for society and for their members often more inclusive than substantive definition 0 Six main functions of families Ogburn I Reproduction I Socialization I Protection I Regulation of sexual behavior I Affection and companionship I Provision of social status gt Who Rules 0 PatriarchySociety in which men dominate in family decision making 0 MatriarchySociety in which women dominate in family decision making 0 Egalitarian FamilyAuthority pattern in which spouses are regarded as equals o Egalitarian family has become more common pattern in the US in recent decades but male dominance over family still prevails 0 Family serves as basis for transferring power property and privilege I Children inherit privileged or lessthanprivileged social and economic status of parents I Socioeconomic status of child s family has marked in uence on nutrition health care housing educational opportunities and life chances Marriage and Family gt Over 95 of US men and women will marry at least once 0 Our social positions shape our choices when picking partners gt Courtship and Mate Selection 0 Historically not uncommon for marriages to be arranged by families or matchmakers o In US most assume true love will guide the way 0 In practice pool of potential partners is substantially reduced by social location 0 EndogamyRestriction of mate selection to people within same group 0 ExogamyRequires mate selection outside certain groups usually one s own family or certain kin o Incest TabooSocial norm common to virtually all societies prohibiting sexual relationships between certain culturally specified relatives 0 HomogamyConscious or unconscious tendency to select mate with personal characteristics similar to one s own gt Variations in Family Life and Intimate Relationships 0 Social Class Differences I Historically poor and workingclass families were more authoritarian and middleclass families were more permissive and less likely to use physical punishment I Recent research shows middleclass parents provide more structure through participation in organized activities and workingclass parents allow their children greater freedom if they don t overstep disciplinary bounds o Racial and Ethnic Differences I Black single mothers often belong to stable functioning networks I Native Americans draw on family ties to cushion hardships I Mexican American men exhibit machismo sense of virility personal worth and pride in one s maleness I Mexican Americans are described as being more familistic expressing pride in the extended family through the maintenance of close ties outside immediate family gt ChildRearing Patterns 0 Caring for children is a universal function of the family 0 Parenthood and Grandparenthood I Parenthood is one of the most important social roles in US I Rossi Four factors that complicate transition to parenthood 0 Little anticipatory socialization for the social role of caregiver 0 Limited learning occurs during the period of pregnancy o Abrupt transition to parenthood 0 Society lacks clear and helpful guidelines for successful parenthood I One recent development in family life in the US has been the extension of parenthood as adult children continue to live at home or return home after college I In 2012 71 million US children 97 percent lived in a household with a grandparent Adoption I Process that allows for the transfer of the legal rights responsibilities and privileges of parenthood to a new legal parent or parents I Approximately 15 percent of US children live with at least one adoptive parent I In 1995 New York after Vermont and Massachusetts ruled couples do not have to be married to adopt I Approximately 104000 US children were awaiting adoption in 2011 DualIncome Families I Among married couples with children under 6 546 percent have both husband and wife in the labor force I 36 million couples who now live apart for reasons other than marital discord SingleParent FamiliesFamilies in which only one parent is present to care for the children In 2012 283 percent of US children lived With only one parent Families headed by single mothers face especially difficult problems When the mother is a teenager o Stepfamilies Diverse Lifestyles Approximately 58 of children under 18 live With at least one stepparent Stewart 2007 Expanded definition of stepfamilies to include cohabitating couples With children from previous relationships families Whose stepchildren do not live With them full time gay or lesbian couples With children from former heterosexual relationships and stepfamilies With adult children Exact nature of blended families has social significance for adults and children gt Marriage lost much of its social significance as a rite of passage 0 US marriage rate declined since 1970 o CohabitationPractice of living together as a malefemale couple Without marrying In US testing marital waters by living together before making a commitment is a common practice among marriagewary 20 and 30 somethings About half of currently married couples in US say they lived together prior to marriage Half of all cohabitants previously married gt Diverse Lifestyles o Remaining Single Trend toward maintaining a single lifestyle for a longer period is related to growing economic independence of young people Re ects the belief that people do not necessarily need to marry to enjoy a satisfying life Remaining single represents a clear departure from societal expectations and can feel lonely in a society that presumes marriage 0 Remaining Childless Significant increase in childlessness in US About 19 of women age 40 to 44 have never had children More couples choosing not to have children Economic considerations contributed to shift in attitudes 0 Lesbian and Gay Relationships Gay and lesbian couplesface discrimination on both personal and legal levels On average unmarried samesex couples had more education greater likelihood of both members being employed and higher incomes than married oppositesex couples Johnson C 2012 Lofquist Lugaila O Connell and Feliz 2012 Though the majority of states havelaws that define marriage as between a man and a woman recent changes in state laws have expanded legal rights for gay and lesbian couples 0 Domestic PartnershipTwo unrelated adults who share mutually caring relationship reside together and agree to be jointly responsible for their dependents basic living expenses and other common necessities I Domestic partnership bene ts can apply to couples inheritance parenting pensions taxation housing immigration workplace fringe benefits and health care Divorce gt Statistical Trends in Divorce 0 More complete picture by looking at marital milestones people reach based on the year they first married I Since late 1980s divorce rate declined by 30 I About 63 of divorced people in US remarry I Women less likely to remarry because many retain custody of children gt Factors Associated with Divorce 0 Greater social acceptance of divorce I More liberal divorce laws I Fewer children I Greater family income I More opportunities for women gt Impact of Divorce on Children 0 In about onethird of divorces children benefited from parental separation because it lessened exposure to con ict Amato and Booth 1997 o In about 70 percent of divorces parents engaged in low level of con ict


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