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According to Sociology

According to Sociology, the Family is one of society’s main, and arguably most important, social institutions as it serves to socialize individuals to be productive members of the society. Whenever we need something we all look to our family for guidance, support and a sense of belonging. Others believe that the family is the most important institution as it is our first encounter with socialization processes. From a sociological perspective, the Family is not only viewed as an institution but also as a social system and a social group (Eshleman 2000).

As with all institutions the Family has within its boundaries a set of norms,values, statuses, and roles within the Family are designed to guide sexual activity and social relations within a sexual union of individuals. The family is important in maintaining the stability of society and the well-being of individuals. Both marriage and society involve a mental and moral fusion of individuals; the division of labor contributes to greater efficiency in all areas of life. As years goes by and socialization changes among people and the society, family tends to breakdown at some point and another.

Family becomes the primary source of inequality particularly when it comes to system of inheritance. On a Feminist Perspective, family also reproduces patriarchy where men control women’s labor power. While for an Interactionist Perspective, family focuses as a group rather than as an institution. For Popenoe who is one great sociologist, family is defined as a household which is a living unit consist of one or more individuals who are not related to one another through blood, marriage or adoption.

Every family is a household but every household is not a family. Developments in relationship progresses and the sacred meaning of marriage has been set aside nowadays. This is where the idea of the family breaking down and/or simply adapting to new social conditions according to sociology. Cohabitation is rampant in our times where couple lives together without being legally married. Because according to those people who chose to live in even without marriage, there is no difference living in with their partners.

The distribution of domestic labor responsibilities are just likely to fall to women who are cohabitating as married women. When it comes to domestic partnership, unmarried couples who live together in a committed, sexually intimate relationship and is granted the same rights and benefits as married couples. Lesbian and gay couples have sought this form of recognition because they are restricted from entering into legal marriage. Some remain single out of choice while others are single out of necessity.

Persons who remain single are more individualistic and value personal growth and friends over marriage and children. Persons who are single out of necessity are those for whom marriage would be an economic risk. New shifts in family includes the so called ‘new family” which is referred to as the enc\semble of multicultural, polysexual and multigenerational relations that have common characterize family life in the late 2oth century.

For example are “lesbigay” families which may be composed of several co-parents and their children, “divorce-extended” families which includes spouses and ex spouses as well as the spouses children. There is also this so called “transnational” families with members living in different countries, even different continents. They are also composed of couples from different cultures, races, and/or nations, single-parents and their children, co-habitating couples with or without children, and many other configurations.

But where my analysis differs from most analyses today is where it locates the sources of the changes in family life and family relations. Whereas most focus on the surface changes of the family and on this basis declare that, for instance, the gay family or the transnational family represent radical departures from the family forms of earlier periods in capitalism, the argument I develop here is that the “new family” is an effect of the working of the laws of motion of capital and the unfolding of the class contradiction at the root of the capitalist division of labor.

The idea of the family that ends to breakdown in adapting to new social conditions according to sociology resides in the fact that why does an individual need towith a complicated marriage over a piece of paper if they can settle even without it and with great convenience and commitment. Eshleman J. Ross 2000. The Family Ninth Edition. Allyn & Bacon: needham Heights. Nelson, Lynn. The Family Through Time. chapter 11 of Sociology in Global Perspective Why is the New Family So Familiar? By: Julie Torrant http://www. redcritique. org/WinterSpring2006/whyisthenewfamilysofamiliar. html

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