Plan for 24 Mark Questions on Family

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1. Examine the ways in which childhood can be said to be socially constructed. * School leaving age has increased from 12 to 16 in the last century. * Children are not allowed to work full time under the age of 16. * Children Act 1989; children taken away, if parents incapable looking after child. * Childhood differs between class, gender and ethnicity; child in poverty who suffers from poorer health and life chances, and lower achievement in education. * Child support agency; legal right to be financially supported by parents. * Include childhood thinkers, Brooks (cotton wool society), Aries (differentiation between childhood and adulthood), Pollack, Palmer (toxic society), Shorter (position of childhood improved), Gittens (age patriarchy), and Postman (childhood disappearing). 2. Assess the view that the nuclear family is no longer the norm. * People entering higher education; becoming more independent from parental control, causing a rise in cohabitation. * Changing position of women, allowed to divorce, producing lone and diverse families * Laws changed; civil partnership legal, hence same sex families developing. * Laws such as Child support agency, reinforce nuclear families; men paying for child. * No stigma attached to women divorcing, hence more women likely to get divorced, and marry again, producing reconstituted families. * Secularisation (Stacey); people less likely to get married. 3. Examine the reasons for changes in birth rates and family size since 1900. * Women more career orientated; having children later on in life. * Readily availability contraception. * Free NHS; children have higher rates of survival because of the facilities and medicine provide. * Families in the past, would have many kids and not all of them survived, because of the lack of health care. *
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