Topic 1-The functionalist view of the family

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Sociology2 Mind Map on Topic 1-The functionalist view of the family, created by kasia.lovatt on 05/11/2013.

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Topic 1-The functionalist view of the family
1 Functionalist theories of the family
1.1 Family exists as it has a function or purpose
1.2 Family seen to perform functions
1.2.1 benefits members and society as a whole
2 George Peter Murdock (1949)
2.1 4 universal functions performed by family in every society
2.1.1 Sexual Rules limiting/forbidding sexual relationships outside marriage Helps establish the social system Without them, conflict may occure
2.1.2 Economic Unit of production Now a unit of consumption Contribution to wider society
2.1.3 Reproduction Main unit for producing children Without it, society would cease to exitst
2.1.4 Educational Primary socialisation Without it, there would be no culture There would be no consensus
2.2 Nuclear Family
2.3 Criticisms
2.3.1 He argues, other institutions can do these functions too.
2.3.2 Marxist and Feminists reject "Rose Tinted" theory Functionalists neglect conflict and exploitation within family Feminists See the family as serving the needs of men and oppressing women Marxists Believe that family meets the needs of capitalism
3 Talcot Parsons (1955)
3.1 Focused of Nuclear family in modern industrial society
3.2 His main argument - family has become specialised due to industrialisation
3.3 Institutions such as school and social services have taken over some family functions since the industrial revolution
3.4 2 basic functions
3.4.1 1) Primary Socialisation Parsons agued that every individual must learn the norms and values of society, to preserve consensus and social life These must be 'internalised as part of the personality structure' children's personalities come from societies culture, so it becomes part of them
3.4.2 2) The Stabilisation of Adult personalities Unstable personalities can stop a smooth running of society Families help to stabelise adult personalities Marital partners - emotional support Parent can indulge childish behaviour - playing with children Results in release of strains and stresses and provides emotional security and support Helps stabilise personality then society Family has 'basic and irreducible' functions Warm bath theory
4 Ronalf Fletcher (1966)
4.1 UK functionalist Sociologist
4.2 disagree with the notion that the family had lost its functions
4.3 Suggests that families can now concentrate on essential functions
4.3.1 Caring for family emotions and sexual needs
4.4 To him, it socialises the children by providing a stable home and 'warm bath' to soak away the stresses of the outside world
4.5 Nowadays, people have high expectations of personal relationships
4.5.1 No one tolerates empty shell marriages these days
4.5.2 Can be a reason why divorce has increased as people seek better
4.6 Worried that the family is becoming too enclosed a group
4.6.1 Privatised Nuclear Family
5 Criticisms of Functionalism
5.1 1) Functionilists idea of family are a happy couple who always gets along
5.1.1 Many have criticised that this is not realistic and don't know the realities of the family
5.2 2) Functionalists tend to focus on the positive side of life and barely acknowledge the negative side of families
5.2.1 Disfunctional families are payed very little attention on
5.3 3) Most of the functionalists only payed attention to the Nuclear Family (husband, wife and kids)
5.3.1 Rarely referred to reconstituted families, cohabitated families and other variations of families
5.4 4) Parson's theory is accused of being sexist.
5.4.1 He sees the wife/mother as having the main responsibility Providing warmth and emotional support for husband
5.5 Cheal (2002)
5.5.1 Families are contexts of love and nurturance, but also contexts of violence and murder. Functionalists tend to have a 'rose-tinted' view of family
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