Can lone parenthood still be considered a social problem?

Sarah Cake
Mind Map by Sarah Cake, updated more than 1 year ago
Sarah Cake
Created by Sarah Cake over 6 years ago


Essay mind map for SOCI1003

Resource summary

Can lone parenthood still be considered a social problem?
1 History of lone parenthood being a social/moral problem.
1.1 Poor Law - 1576 - Mothers seen as a moral problem and they could be detained by a justice of the peace for up to one year. Blame firmly on mother.
1.2 Post war lone parents - shift from workers pre war to mothers post war (Lewis, 1998)
1.3 1980's and 1990's - Thatcher government - lone mothers seen as a family/individual/moral problem and that state welfare had increased dependency on the state so by removing welfare benefits it would discourage lone mothers. ( Pascall 1997)
1.4 New Labour 1997 - 2010 - New deal for lone parents
2 Current attitudes towards lone parenting and social policies that are designed to affect lone parents.
2.1 Conservative 'Third way' Cameron 2010 onwards
2.1.1 Is it social attitudes or austerity that have been affecting benefits and social perceptions of lone parent families/
2.1.2 Liberal democrats different ideology and their actions to alter social policy.
2.1.3 Lone parenthood moving back towards being a moral problem and attempts to reduce 'something for nothing' attitude being pushed onto lone parents
2.1.4 A social problem has to offend out values and ideas of what is normal. Lone parenthood has risen dramatically and now encompasses 20% of families so cannot be seen as deviant or abnormal behaviour. Lone parenthood is not the thing that offends values and norms but dependence on state welfare and benefits. Perception that lone mothers are teenagers getting pregnant to become single mothers for benefits and a council house - throw back to Thatcherism, ONS statistics about composition of lone families. Poverty, social exclusion and economic exclusion are main social problems surrounding lone parenthood but they are stand alone social problems not exclusive to lone parenthood therefore the problem's 'caused' my lone parenthood must be addressed then the 'social problem' of lone parenthood would be addressed.
3 Lone parenthood can still be considered a social problem but the issues surrounding lone parenthood cannot be assumer to come from parenting as a lone person per se.
3.1 Economic exclusion down to childcare and employer problems - common problems for people who are less flexible (disabled other carers etc)
3.2 Lone parenthood is constructed as a social problem through media and reporting of sensationalised cases rather than giving the whole picture. Tabloids are far reaching.
3.2.1 Social exclusion widely associated with sterotypes and the attitudes and behaviours associated with them. Public has been socialised into believing stories about minority cases and therefore assume that all single mothers are the same. We are also conditioned to notice sterotypes.
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