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Role of family 2

As Sociology Families

Feminist Views on Family - issues Maintains existing patriarchal social order; Supports inequality; Socialisation of oppression of women.
Feminist View on family 1.maintaining patriarchy Family maintains existing social order (functionalists and Marxists also believe this) which is a Patriarchy. ie.combination of systems, ideologies and cultural practices which ensure that men have power.
Feminist View on family 2.Inequality Family supports and reproduces inequalities between men and women
Feminist View on family. 3.Oppression Women are oppressed because they are socialised to be dependent on men and put themselves second. Family has central role in this socialisation- male and female roles and expectations are formed in the family and taken into wider society.
Main distinction between the 3 main strands of feminist thought on the family Differ in what they see as root cause of patriarchy. Marxist feminists think is capitalist system, radical feminists think power dominance of men, liberal feminists think cultural attitudes and laws allow discrimination.
Marxist Feminism- Key Points
Radical Feminism- Key Points Also highlights exploitation of women by housework but due to domination of men in society rather than fault of capitalist system. Delphy and Leonard(1992) see family as patriarchal institution where women do most work and men get most benefit.
Liberal Feminism- Key Points Emphasises cultural norms and values reinforced by family. FAMily is sexist because it supports sexist mainstream culture. They believe social change is possible and put pressure on legal system and government to change discriminatory laws and policies.
Criticisms of Feminist view of family 1. Portrays women as passive,plays down ability to improve situation. 2. Does not acknowledge power may be shared. 3. Does not consider power structure in gay/ lone-parent households. 4. women from different ethnic backgrounds have different experiences.
New Right views on family Traditional nuclear family and values (with dad in work) are best for society. Believe social policies on children, divorce etc have undermined the family.
Charles Murray (1989)-New Right Says traditional family is under threat; that welfare benefits are too high and have created a (culture of dependency" where it is easy and acceptable to to take benefits rather then work.
New Rights views on lone-parent and reconstituted families Concerned about high benefits to single mothers; best to bring children up in family with working adults. Increase in lone/reconstituted families +easier access to divorce led to breakdown in traditional values/ cause social problems e.g. increased crime.
How has New Right views on family influenced policy? Some politicians have made use of this- making it harder for people to get benefits.
Main criticism of New Right view of family "Blames the victim" for their problems rather than society.
Central idea of Postmodernists on family Believe there is a much wider range/diversity of available living options nowadays-becasue of social and cultural changes. e.g. traditional nuclear, stepfamilies, cohabiting unmarried couples, divorced people, single people flat-sharing etc.
Postmodern view on family -Judith Stacey (1990) Now such a diversity of family types and lifestyles that there will never be one dominant type of family in Western culture again. Western family structures are flexible and varied and people can move form one type of family structure to another.
Postmodernism - flexibility in contemporary living. Flexibility means people can experience lots of different types of family in their lifetime. See diversity and flexibility as POSITIVE because people can choose from several options depending on personal needs and lifestyle. Not hemmed in by tradition.
Criticism of Postmodernist view of family Question if moving through different family types is typical. O'Brien & Jones(1996) research concluded that was less variety in UK family types than in Stacey's research and most people only experienced one or two different family types in their life.
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