There are different views on the functionalism of the family and these views can change over time, between societies and between people in the same society. One man who expressed his functionalist view on the family was Murdock. He felt that the family was at the heart of society and that the nuclear family (mother, father and two or more children) was so useful to society it is inevitable and universal. This suggests that Murdock thought that the family was a natural part of society and happens all over the world. He felt that the family was multi-functional and could do a lot of things that needed to be done in modern day culture.
Type of Premise: Prescriptive premise Explanation: A prescriptive premise is a premise in an argument containing a value statement. (Judith Boss, 2011) 1 is a prescriptive premise because the value statement of how marriage is a bond between a man and woman is recognized by society as what a typical “American family” should be. 3 is a prescriptive premise because the value statement that marriage is not based on reproducing is true. Marriage is based on the union of two people who love each other and want to spend their lives with each other. Though having offspring is why marriage is created marriage should be based on the basis of how two people love one another.
Functionalist believes every institution has its own purpose in order to exist. They compare the social institutions to the organs in the body, this theory is known as the analogy of body; they believe family is the most important ‘organ’ and functionalists believe the family has essential functions that needs to perform to meet the society’s needs. In this essay, I will mention Murdock and his 4 main functions that a family must perform, Parson and his 2 main functions, and Parsons’ warm bath theory. Unlike some sociological perspectives, functionalism takes a very positive view of the families and households. They believe nuclear family (and sometimes extended) family is the most ideal family because it is the only family that can perform all those functions that a family should in order to meet and achieve the society’s needs.Murdock, a functionalist believes a family is responsible to perform 4 main functions included sexual, economic, education and reproductive.
In today’s society families consist of civil unions, single parents, and families that try to utilize and keep the same values that were present in the 1950’s. These families are faced with restrictions from society, living up to the expectations to provide the same love and support as the traditional families do. Everyday these families prove that they are capable of breaking the molds. In life we are affected by the decisions that politicians make everyday based on marriage. We are facing a big problem in society about marriages and their stances on civil unions.
According to some, a nuclear family may be viewed as a group to be called a nuclear that consists of, at some time, a father, mother and at least one child. Almost every society has this family structure within it and thus the family is group is viewed and defined by this model. Today there are many nuclear families that do not fit this conventional model which is said to have been most popular during the mid-part of the 20th century. It is also in my opinion, though the conventional family has become part of the norm for family systems today, the perceptions of a traditional family co-exists within the hopes of becoming a reality for the non-conventional family. Of course, my nuclear family weighs on the side of non-conventional in every way.
Nuclear families are a form consisting of father, mother and their biological children. Also referred to as the 'traditional' family. Not timeless or universal concept. Extended family- kin networks that extend outside or beyond the nuclear family. End vs. Ex Endogamy- marriage from within ones social group.
When it came to relationships it could be anything from marrying someone of the same sex to not marrying at all. There were new, more lenient guidelines to having a relationship in the 21st century, and they continued to evolve. Individuals were now aiming “for personal growth and deeper intimacy through more open communication and mutually shared disclosures about feelings with their partners” (428). The social norms of family life were becoming less apparent, and marriage in itself was growing to be less common. Marriage had transformed from the mid-20th century to the 21st century in monumental ways.
In such family, the husband is usually the breadwinner, while the wife is responsible for the housework . Murdock (1949) argued that nuclear family is a 'universal social grouping' which can be found in all societies. However, a number of changes have taken place and the family became more diverse in the recent years. In the olden days, nuclear families were the norm. It was required that the relationship between a couple should be armoured by marriage.
Functionalism vs. Marxism The Functionalist theory believes in a family that is perfect for the industrial society in which we live. The family type more often described by modern functionalists is that of a nuclear variety, idealised as white, middle class, male & female, having children and holding typical western values. Functionalists believe that the family has vital functions to carry out; one of the main functions is passing on of traditional values, another main function would be the socialisation of children and, carrying on, the stabilisation of the adult personality. The Functionalist theory relies heavily on the nuclear family, It is of common belief amongst functionalists that the nuclear family with two parents and dependent children living together in a home is a necessity for the industrial society to thrive. Murdock, a functionalist, states that the family has four functions: sexual, economic, reproductive and educational, He argued that the family needs these four factors and he argues that they are the family's purposes.
Family a Socialization Agent Families are considered the most important aspect of a person’s socialization development. Centuries before the family unit was known as families they were called kinships which “referred to a social network of people based on common ancestry, marriage, or adoption (Kendall, 2013, p. 435). Families are defined as “relationships in which people live together with commitment, form an economic unit and care for any young, and consider their identity to be significantly attached to the group” (Kendall, 2013, p.435). Sociologist Jean Piaget founded four stages of development in human cognition. His first two stages is perhaps the best explanation as to why the family unit is considered the most important aspect of a person’s socialization development.