Given the culturally diverse character of the United Kingdom today,
there are considerable variations in family and marriage within the
country. The structure of families has altered over time and is still
changing today. Changing relationships between spouses in the family,
and in particular, the changes in the position of women in the family.
The family in the UK today reflects a range of factors, including
Britain as a multi-ethnic society, differences in social class, and as
a society in which women choose or are forced to head families by
themselves. A significant section of the population chooses not to
marry at all; are these people posing as an alternative to the family?
A definition of the family is a group of persons directly linked by
kin connections, the adult members of which assume responsibility of
caring for children. Kinship ties are connections between individuals,
established either through marriage or through the lines of descent
that connect blood relatives (mothers, fathers, offspring,
grandparents, etc. The nuclear family is traditionally defined as a
basic family unit of adult partners and their own or adopted children.
The extended family has been defined as 'A grouping broader than the
nuclear family which is related by decent, marriage or adoption. (Bell
and Vogel, A modern introduction to the family). The family has
evolved to a variety of new family types within the last century.
(Laselett, The World we have Lost), The family in pre- Industrial
Britain was nuclear and not extended as once thought. The other ...
... middle of paper ...
without the level of hostilities they would have faced in the past.
Overall there are clear patterns of continuity with the past, but
within an overall trend towards increased diversity.
Allan. G (1985) Family Life, The Bath Press, Avon
Giddens.A (1997) Sociology, Polity Press, Cambridge
Gittens.A (1993) The Family in Question, Macmillan Press, London
Jorgensen, N (1995) Investigating Families and Households, Collins
Poster.M (1978) Critical Theory of the Family, Pluto Press Limited,
Stones, C (1994) Focus on Families, Macmillan Press, London
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