Presentation on theme: "Family: Different Theories. Institution A relatively long-standing social arrangement, made up of a stable set of values, norms, attitudes, and behaviors."— Presentation transcript:
Institution A relatively long-standing social arrangement, made up of a stable set of values, norms, attitudes, and behaviors that develop around a basic social need
Family as a set of Norms (Meadow and Stacey): What counts as a family? Fifteenth Century: Who were our families? Victorian era (circa 1835-1901) Who became our families?
Types of Marriage Systems 1) Polygamy: 2) Bigamy: 3) Polygyny: 4) Polyandry:
Structure-Functionalism (from the point of view of society) Focuses on the structural properties and important social functions performed by the institution (Meadow & Stacey: SF reflects tacit cultural view at the time, e.g., “Naturalness of inevitability of the nuclear Family).
Conflict Perspective (from the perspective of society) Emphasizes how the family perpetuates patterns of social inequality. Rather than providing benefits to the society as a whole (SF), the family is seen as the principle institution in which the dominance of men over women is expressed in society.
Exchange Theory Focuses on issues of cost, reward, available resources, and equity in interaction. Basic premise: individuals use their different individual resources to bargain and secure advantage in relationships
Interactionism (from the perspective of individuals) Emphasis on individual & situation: concerned with internal family dynamics. How is “meaning constructed” within that family?
Family System A holistic theory, i.e., examining the family as a whole. This perspective is interested in how the family a as system handles information, deals with problems, and regulates contact with the outside world.
Biological Perspective Proposes that human evolutionary biology--anatomy, genetics, hormones-- affect family related behavior (e.g. Gender Roles) “Boys will be Boys” vs. “We promote them to be that way”
Feminist Perspective (Comes out of the conflict perspective) 1. Central focus on “the politics of gender” * Male dominance in family and society is oppressive to women * What is good for one family member may not be good for the other members 2. Brought attention to what was previously overlooked: Wife abuse; Domestic Violence; Marriage Rape; etc.
Feminist Perspective Theme Gender is central to the analysis of family; male dominance in family and society is oppressive of women. Key Concepts Male dominance; Power and inequality; Sex/gender systems Current Research Work and family; Domestic violence; Family power; Advocacy of women’s issues
Theoretical Perspectives: Waiting for Medical Attention Family ecologists might speculate about the family’s home and neighborhood and how it affects their health. Conflict theorists would compare this clinic with the doctors’ offices that provide health care to the middle and upper classes and demand change.
Theoretical Perspectives: Waiting for Medical Attention Structure functionalists might note the child-raising function(s) the woman is performing for society. Interactionists might explore the mother’s body language: What is she saying nonverbally to the child? What is he saying to her?
Theoretical Perspectives: Waiting for Medical Attention Exchange theorists might speculate about the woman’s power and resources relative to others in her family. Family system theorists might point out that the mother and child are part of a family system: Should one leave the family, relationships would change and adapt.
Theoretical Perspectives: Waiting for Medical Attention Feminist theorists might point out that typically mothers, are responsible for their children’s health and ask why. The answer from a biosocial perspective would be that women have evolved a stronger nurturing capacity.
Family: Definitions Book’s Definition: Any sexually expressive or parent-child or other kin relationship in which--usually related by ancestry, marriage, or adoption--(1) form an economic unit and care for any young, (2) consider their identity to be significantly attached to the group, and (3) commit to maintaining that group over time. Pp. 9 What’s your definition?