Essay on The Decline Of The Nuclear Family And The Types Of Family

Essay on The Decline Of The Nuclear Family And The Types Of Family

Length: 1464 words (4.2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Recent changes within society have caused an increase in different formations of families that have been described as ‘families in flux’ (Giddens, 1992). A family is a group of people who are related by kinship ties, such as, relations of blood, marriage, adoption or a cohabiting couple (Allan and Crow, 2001). However, due to the ongoing changes within families and society, there are conflicting opinions of the best way to reflect the diverse forms that this human social grouping can take (McKie and Callan, 2012). This essay will discuss the recent changes that have occurred in relation to families, exploring gender and feminist theories to explain the extent to which people are choosing not to conform to traditional norms of family life (Allan and Crow, 2001). Firstly, this essay will look at the decline of the nuclear family and the types of family that are emerging in replace of it. Then it will focus on the increase in divorce rates and the increase in lone parent families. Finally, it will focus on why cohabiting couples are the fastest growing family type and explore the causation in the changes of marriage, using gender and feminist theories as an explanation.

One of the biggest changes seen in relation to families is the decline in the dominant family structure defined by functionalist during the 1950s, as the nuclear family (Steel, Kidd and Brown, 2012). The nuclear family consisted of two heterosexual parents and their children, and was the dominant family structure that was seen as appropriate for carrying out vital functions for society and individuals (Ibid). Societal norms have reinforced that this is the ideal structure of a family, however, recent changes in marriage, divorce, childbearing and economics have ove...


... middle of paper ...


...ocialisation of young children (ref).

In conclusion, this essay shows that there have been significant changes in relation to the family in recent years. However, the notion of family is constantly changing and is still undergoing a significant amount of change in order to keep up with the changes happening within society as a whole. Despite the recent changes the extent to which the institution is still the socially approved place for the ongoing domination of women by men needs to be studied further (McKie and Callan, 2012). With an aging population and rising prices in the economy within the near future it is possible that there could be a gradual increase in the extended family, as people try to balance the financial costs of care of elderly relatives, but also with the growing increase of both parents working, therefore an increase in the need for child care.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Examining the View that the Traditional Nuclear Family is in Decline Essays

- Examining the View that the Traditional Nuclear Family is in Decline When evaluating the view that the traditional nuclear family (of two opposite sex married parents living in a household that contains only them and their own dependant children), is in decline, I will be taking various pieces of research and evidence from Sociologists, Journalists and other sources, into consideration in order to try to determine how true this view is. The nuclear family would appear to be found internationally and would be described as ‘universal’ by Murdock, varying in popularity from country to country, however I will be concentrating mainly in the UK....   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
1346 words (3.8 pages)

Family Is The Most Common But Not All Essay

- Definition of a family evolved over the years and may have a various meaning for each of us. There are many different types of families: nuclear, reconstituted, extended, single parents, complex, traditional, step, foster - these are the most common but not all. G.P. Murdock’s (1949) defined family as a structure containing adults of both sexes and one or more children, own or adopted. Although a sugar-sweet picture of “cereal box” family is no longer a standard, Office for National Statistic states, that in 2013 there were 5,9 million nuclear families....   [tags: Family, Nuclear family, Extended family, Mother]

Better Essays
1099 words (3.1 pages)

The Function of the Nuclear Family Essay

- The extended family predominated pre-industrially because of the need for a large family to help tend the land or look after those who were unable to do so. Infant mortality was high so you had to produce more children to be sure of having enough help. The family were a unit of production producing only the goods needed to survive and trading the remainder. Following the Industrial Revolution in the late 19th century, it was replaced by the nuclear family which was a unit of consumption as family members became wage earners and families needed to become more geographically mobile and move to where they could find work....   [tags: environment, society, exclusion, diversity]

Better Essays
1571 words (4.5 pages)

Rise and Fall of the Nuclear Family Essay

- The perfect family has always been an American dream. In the 50s many families wanted to have the perfect family. A working father a stay at home mom and two well behaved children. This image was magnified by the media and you may have been considered an outcast if you didn’t act a certain way. “Widely accepted in the popular mind, this comforting and stereotypical picture was challenged by real-life wives, many of whom worked outside the home” (Introduction to the 50s). Many people then started to rebel against this idea of the perfect family....   [tags: Women's Roles, Rise of the Suburb]

Better Essays
1170 words (3.3 pages)

Essay about The American Family During The 21st Century

- The traditional, American family, made up of a “bread-winner” father, a “housewife” mother, and their children, can be traced back to the 1950s as being the most prevalent type of family. This type of family is what many people would think of when they thought of the typical family. Nowadays, fewer people think of the nuclear family unit as the typical American family. The American family in the 21st century is declining due to factors, such as increasing divorce rates, division of labor, and cohabitation....   [tags: Family, Marriage, Mother, Divorce]

Better Essays
791 words (2.3 pages)

Defining Family Essay

- Determining family structure and dynamics as well as defining the family is a complex process. Personally, I come from a very traditional family. Much like the assumptions made by the students in the article Defining Family: Young Adults’ Perceptions of the Parent-Child Bond by Mellisa Holtzman (2008). This is what comes to mind when most people define family; a nuclear family, with married parents, and biological children. However, a family is a complex system and can take on many different forms....   [tags: Family Psychology ]

Better Essays
1913 words (5.5 pages)

Essay on Gender As Basic Category Of Analysis

- FAMILY: A social group whose members are bound by legal, biological, or emotional ties, or a combination of all three (page 358) There are three types of family which are as follows: EXTENDED FAMILY: A large group of relatives, usually including at least three generations living either in one household or in close proximity. KIN:Relatives or relations, usually those related by common descent. NUCLEAR FAMILY: A hetrosexual cuople with one or more children living in a single household....   [tags: Family, Nuclear family, Sociology]

Better Essays
1167 words (3.3 pages)

The Family as an Agent of Socialization Essay

- Family is a fundamental social institution in society, the family, is considered the primary and most important agent of socialization. Family typically consists of a man and woman and their children or two or more people who usually reside in the same home and share same goals and values. Traditionally, in all societies, the family has always been seen as a social institution; that has the biggest impact on society. Everyone is born into some form of family, with the family taking the responsibility of nurturing, teaching the norms or accepted behaviors within the family structure and within society....   [tags: Sociology]

Better Essays
1399 words (4 pages)

An Investigation Looking at Nuclear Families and the Roles and Responsibilities of Each Member in Britain Today

- An Investigation Looking at Nuclear Families and the Roles and Responsibilities of Each Member in Britain Today This investigation seeks to identify whether the changes in our society have affected the roles and responsibilities of the members of nuclear families or not, and if so, then how and to what extent. ====================================================================== The conventional nuclear family is seen as the best type of family for modern life by functionalists and the New Right....   [tags: Papers]

Free Essays
2433 words (7 pages)

Essay about The Argument of Family Being Beneficial to Society

- Families are crucially important to society without doubt. Most British people are born into families and then raised by a family. Most of these very same people grow up to form families of their own and take the responsibility of being a parent. Many people see the family as the normal way of life and watch television programs which revolve around family life. For many the nuclear family has always been viewed as the proper way to bring up children and to live life. However, the subject of families is much deeper than many think....   [tags: Papers Argumentative Psychology Essays]

Better Essays
2286 words (6.5 pages)