Discourse supports certain ideas within society, and enhances the moral superiority of different aspects in one’s life (Van Dijk, 2006). It helps to shape the social world, and in particular strongly shapes society’s view on males and females whose status is single (Elder-Vass, 2011). It does not necessarily imply that society altogether manipulates ones certain view on singles; however it structures ones interpretation of the situation (Van Dijk, 2006). In the case of every individual, discourse helps structure the idea that one’s life should involve finding a partner and those that do not are said to live incomplete lives (Budgeon, 2008). This essay will break down the dominant discourses surrounding singles; as well as uncover certain media and literature that creates society’s negative associations with singles. (Reynolds & Taylor, 2005; Gordon, 2003) There is no simple solution to this discourse; however one must approach all aspects in society that contribute to the intervention of such stigma and must be relevant to the context of the situation.
Firstly, the term single refers to both males and females who are not in a relationship, never been in a relationship, never married, chaste, widowed, divorced, childless, or a single parent (Reynolds & Taylor, 2005). It also refers to those in the age group of teenagers to 80 year olds within the Australian culture. Society structures anyone within this age group, to believe that it is a social expectation to find love, marry and have children, and that one should have the desire for this or a concern when it is not achieved (Spielmann et al., 2013). This shows that society see’s relationships an...
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...e Women. Journal of Feminist Family Therapy, 25(4), 257--280.
Sharp, E., & Ganong, L. (2011). "I'm a Loser, I'm Not Married, Let's Just All Look at Me": Ever-Single Women's Perceptions of Their Social Environment. Journal of Family Issues, 32(7), 956-980.
Spielmann, S., MacDonald, G., Maxwell, J., Joel, S., Peragine, D., Muise, A., & Impett, E. (2013). Settling for less out of fear of being single. Journal of Personality And Social Psychology, 105(6), 1049-1073. doi: 10.1037/a0034628.
Usdansky, M. (2009). Ambivalent Acceptance of Single-Parent Families: A Response to Comments. Journal of Marriage And Family, 71(2), 240—246.
Van Dijk, T. (2006). Discourse and manipulation. Discourse \& Society, 17(3), 359--383.
Zartler, U. (2014). How to Deal With Moral Tales: Constructions and Strategies of Single-Parent Families. Journal of Marriage And Family, 76(3), 604--619.
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