S-Cool Revision Summary

S-Cool Revision Summary

This Revision Summary applies to all of the Family topics...

Can You?

Describe the main ideas people have concerning what families 'ought' to be like.

Explain why it is that people have these ideas.

Explain the main sources of support for these ideas

Describe 'conventional' and 'de-regulated' families.

Can You?

Outline the way in which Action Theory and Post-modernism explain diversity.

List and describe the main types of diversity identified.

Explain the causes of diversity.

Explain the argument for continuity.

Can You?

Give a basic outline of the functionalist perspective on 'the' family.

List and demonstrate understanding of the assumptions made by functionalism concerning the family.

Explain why the assumptions are open to criticism.

Can You?

Explain the contributions made to research into the history of contemporary western families by:

  • Laslett.

  • Anderson.

  • Harris.

Give an account of the main findings and arguments concerning alleged changes in family structures brought about by the Industrial Revolution.

Give an account of why functionalist accounts appear flawed.

Can You?

Identify the central issues concerning the nature/nurture debate as it applies to gender roles.

Identify the traditional approach to gender roles as outlined by Parsons, and give an account of the evidence provided by Parsons.

Understand the basis and background to the symmetrical family debate.

Understand the criticisms made of the symmetry argument.

Evaluate the implications of empirical studies of male and female domestic roles.

Can You?

Identify recent trends in divorce statistics.

Identify and give an account of the possible causes of the increase in divorce.

Explain what divorce statistics cannot tell us about contemporary marriages.

Patriarchy A system legitimates male domination.
Nature (naturalism) Naturally occurring, a part of the natural world.
Domestic Ideology The ideology that legitimates female domesticity.
Life cycle Viewing the family in terms of fairly predictable features from formation to dissolution.
Life course Looking at relationships formed by an individual in the course of their life.
Reconstituted family Families where at least one of the adults has a child from a previous relationship.
Single parent family Families headed by only one parent.
Same sex families Families headed by adults of the same sex.
Nuclear family A family consisting of two generations (parents and children).
Extended family A family consisting of either three generations (vertical extended) or two generations plus other kin such as uncles or cousins (horizontal extended).
Essential/non-essential functions Those tasks which need to be performed by families and those tasks formerly performed by families but now undertaken by other institutions.
Isolated nuclear family A nuclear family that has no ties of dependence and reciprocation beyond itself other than by choice.
'Fit' The idea that there is some sort of special fit between nuclear families and an industrialized society.
Geographic mobility Movement by people from one physical location to another.
Social mobility Movement by people from one level of the class hierarchy to another.
Achieved status A status that is 'earned' by the person occupying it.
Ascribed status A status that is 'given' for example, daughter.
Instrumental role Concerned with the material needs of the family - associated with the male role.
Affective role Concerned with the emotional and social needs of family members - associated with the female role.
Segregated roles The man and woman have separate and distinct family roles and social lives.
Joint roles The man and woman share the tasks required by family life.
Symmetrical Each side mirrors the other; applied to male and female roles in some families.
Dual career family A family where both the male and female have careers.
Legal Aid and Advice Act (1949)  
Divorce Reform Act (1969) Irretrievable breakdown.
Domestic Violence and Matrimonial Proceedings Act (1976) Applied in the County Courts and permitted courts to issue non-molestation and exclusion injunctions.
Domestic Proceedings and Magistrates Act (1978) Extends above powers to magistrates courts. However provisions only applies to married women.
Housing Act (1977) Made it the responsibility of local authorities to re-house certain categories of people-mainly families - providing they had not intentionally made themselves homeless. Act explicitly stated that women who had left a violent man should not be seen as having intentionally made themselves homeless and should be re-housed.
Stigma Spoiled identity.
R. and R.N. Rapoport Dual Career Families (1971).
R. Chester The rise of the neo-conventional family (1985).
P. Willmott Urban kinship past and present (1988).
Parsons The essential functions of the family.
Bales Experimental work with Parsons on instrumental and Affective roles.
Zelditch Cross-cultural data used by Parsons.
Kessler and Mackenna (1978) Family types ignored by Parson's idealized family.
Bowlby (1965) Theory of maternal deprivation.
Rutter (1972) Chief caretaker need not be mother, need not be female.
Laslett Statistical work on family size since the 16th century.
Anderson Study of Preston based on 1851 census figures.
Harris The idea that inheritance systems could be implicated in early development of industrialisation.
Willmott and Young Extended families in East London in the 1950's.
Bott 'The Family and Social Networks' (1957). Coined terms segregated and joint.
Willmott and Young 'The Symmetrical Family' (1973).
Rosser and Harris (1965) Growth of more companionate marriage.
Goldthorpe and Lockwood 'The Affluent Worker' (1967).
Rapoport et al 'Dual Career Families Re-examined' (1976).
J. Bernard 'The Wife's Marriage' (1972).
M. Maynard 'Contemporary Housework and The Houseworker Role' (1985).
Edgell 'Middle Class Couples' (1980).
J. Pahl 'Money and Marriage' (1989).
F. Divine (1992) Re-visiting the affluent worker town of Luton.
A. Oakley 'The Sociology of Housework' (1974).
Fletcher (1966) Increase in divorce a consequence of higher expectations of marriage.
Wilson (1966) Increased in divorce because of Secularisation.
Gibson (1994) Financial state of marriage is a good predictor of divorce.
Dobash and Dobash (1980) 'Violence Against Wives'.
Hanmer (1983) A study of community violence to women.
Abbott and Wallace (1990) 'Note the main trigger for violence is the male perception that a partner is failing in her duties.
Faulk (1974) Argued men convicted of abuse were mentally ill.
Schlegel (1972) Looked at 45 societies and showed that 75% of them permitted husbands to be aggressive towards their wives.