Is The American Family? Essay

Is The American Family? Essay

Length: 1148 words (3.3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Is the American family in really in crisis or is it just evolving at a more advanced rate than society? According to the sociologist, Michael Kimmel, “[t]hough the family feels like one of the most fragile of social institutions, it is also perhaps among the most resilient” (Kimmel 143). It seems fragile because of the decline of marriages rates, the increase in divorce rates, and the increase in cohabitating couples. However, the family is one of the most resilient social institutions, “able to adapt to changing economic, social, and cultural circumstances and remain the foundation of society” (Kimmel 142). Besides, statistics alone do not prove the failing condition of the American family.
According to Kimmel, the notion of what constitutes a family is confusing to the American population and has been confusing for decades. The main reason is that Americans have a “romanticized notion that the family form of the 1950s… is the timeless trope that all families forms out to emulate” (Kimmel 143). This 1950s family model is a mythic model that has nothing to do with reality. The history of the American family is a roller coaster with its ups on egalitarianism and its downs in oppression and separations of spheres.
In the late-eighteenth and early nineteenth century, American families enjoyed “intimate relationships between husbands and wives and between parents and children” (Kimmel 144). Both parents were involved in child rearing and the world of work. Later in the nineteenth century, men experienced a gap between the private (reproductive) sphere and the public (productive) sphere. Men’s work was given more freedom from the home duties. Meanwhile, women’s work was, as Kimmel describes it, a “God-given mission.” The job of the h...


... middle of paper ...


...difficult for one person to live on their own, picture it with someone else. Nonetheless, Americans are still eager “to have stable, long-lasting relationships and families” (White).
The American family has always been trying to adapt to the economic, social, and cultural changes the best it can. However, in the last few decades, the American society has been bombed by critical events and situations that it is still taking its time to assimilate the alterations. Similarly, the American family has experienced significant changes in its definition. Society is still fighting against the new family structures and roles. The reality is that Americans marry, divorce, remarry, cohabitate, or remain unmarried (both single and in couples). The point is that they believe in the institution of family – in every form of it – and that family is still the cornerstone of America.

Need Writing Help?

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

Check your paper »

Different Values Between Chinese Family And American Family Essay

- The different values between Chinese family and American family First, Chinese family and American play a big role in there and community. Chinese families as well as American families value education. The reason why American families believe education is important for their kids because he or she as the parent is responsible for their child education. ‘Researchers” have understood the “parents” involvement with their children help their children to do better in schools and throughout their lives....   [tags: Family, Money, An American Family, Mother]

Better Essays
896 words (2.6 pages)

Essay about The Black American And Caribbean Family

- For centuries to come the notion may persist that men of African descent and in particular, the fathers are nonexistent within the Afro American/Caribbean family. It is believed that men of African descent are not present in the children’s lives. For some of us this may be our reality, but slightly skewed to paint a negative image of the men in these communities. However, for us to understand why this has infiltrated our culture and way of thinking, we must examine the creators of this culture and way of thinking....   [tags: Slavery, African American, Family, Black people]

Better Essays
1112 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on African American Family Structure And African Americans

- Significance The unit of a family is the most prominent essential for all of us. As social human beings, we seek social support in order to thrive, and that is where family comes into play. A family is where you receive love, support, encouragement, and many other social benefits. The total number of households in the United States increased from 63 million in 1970 to 113 million in 2008 (Weeks, 2012). The family has influenced multitudes of people in many ways. The traditional family in the United States consists two-married individuals providing care and stability for their biological offspring also know as the nuclear family....   [tags: Family, African American, Mother, Father]

Better Essays
1075 words (3.1 pages)

Is The African American Family Slowly Disintegrating? Essay

- Is The African American Family Slowly Disintegrating. America, as we know it today, is composed of an eclectic mix of cultures including African, Asian, Hispanic, Native American as well as diverse European cultures. These cultures have amalgamated in some ways, but in other ways certain cultures have established themselves as dominant, immensely contributing to the paradigm shifts in the American culture. The English language, for example, is the language that is prevalently spoken in the United States today; it is traditionally associated with the Yankees who have European descent....   [tags: Family African American Black Essays]

Better Essays
1485 words (4.2 pages)

Is The American Family? Essay

- Is the American family in really in crisis or is it just evolving at a more advanced rate than society. According to the sociologist, Michael Kimmel, “[t]hough the family feels like one of the most fragile of social institutions, it is also perhaps among the most resilient” (Kimmel 143). It seems fragile because of the decline of marriages rates, the increase in divorce rates, and the increase in cohabitating couples. However, the family is one of the most resilient social institutions, “able to adapt to changing economic, social, and cultural circumstances and remain the foundation of society” (Kimmel 142)....   [tags: Family, Marriage, Divorce, Cohabitation]

Better Essays
1148 words (3.3 pages)

Essay on The Family Of The American Family

- Parenting in America Today There has been quite a bit of research done on what a family in America today looks like. In fact, the American family is changing and the family unit is undergoing challenging fluctuations. There really isn’t one typical American family unit any long and families are more diverse now than in times past. Parents in America today are less likely to be married when they decide to have children and are more likely to be older and more educated. Families can consist of two parent households, single family households, blended households, same sex households and households wherein unrelated people live together due to economic circumstances....   [tags: Family, Parenting, Leisure, Stepfamily]

Better Essays
1723 words (4.9 pages)

An Definition Of An American Family Essay

- People may have different idea of what is a family. The definition of an American family has become a dynamic and changing idea in recent years, now we find public acceptance of new family constructs that were not considered the mainstream. “Family” is a household grouping in all human society. In this essay I will discuss the “many forms of contemporary families and its function” and “some of the economic factors affecting comtemporary family” First, “the many form of contemporary families and its functions”....   [tags: Family, Nuclear family, Mother, Father]

Better Essays
800 words (2.3 pages)

Essay about What Makes An American Family?

- A question that could spark quite a debate could be “what makes an American family.” Some may debate that the traditional family is the only type of American family, some may debate that the meaning of an American family has changed and still continues to change over the years. The debate tends to spark when everyone gets into the topic because everyone has different opinions. But a good question in today’s society is what exactly makes an American family. Is the only type of American family still the traditional type or has the meaning of the American family transformed over the years....   [tags: nuclear family, same-sex family]

Better Essays
1257 words (3.6 pages)

Essay on My Family Is An Average American Family

- In today’s society, my family would be considered an average American family. Our house is very mediocre with brown bricks and a white fence surrounding our backyard. We are located in a small town called New Lenox, which is in southern Illinois. My parents were not connected through either of their families; they first locked eyes on the Metra train while commuting to work. In that day and age, there was no such thing that either of them was required to do to get connected to each other’s families....   [tags: Family, Mother, Nuclear family, Extended family]

Better Essays
1234 words (3.5 pages)

Essay about The American Family Model

- The American family model traditionally included the mother and father with two kids, a boy and girl. In this 1950’s family model the husband is seen as the breadwinner while the mother is the homemaker. This model is exemplified in the Battleship advertisement where the father is resting from a hard day’s by work playing a board game with his son. At the same time the mother is doing the days dishes with some help drying from her daughter. Today however, these rigid stereotypical roles are no longer applicable to the members of the modern family....   [tags: Family, Father, Mother, Nuclear family]

Better Essays
1051 words (3 pages)