Functionalist Theory on the family Flashcards Preview

Sociology - Family > Functionalist Theory on the family > Flashcards

Flashcards in Functionalist Theory on the family Deck (10):
1

How do functionalists regard society?

They regard the family as the basic building block of society as it has the crucial function of socialising the young & meeting the emotional needs of its members

2

What are George Murdocks 4 essential functions of the family?

1) Stable Satisfaction of the sex drive
2)Biological reproduction of the next generation
3)Socialisation of the young ( basic norms and values)
4)Meeting economic needs

3

What are some criticisms of Murdock?

1)Other institutions may be able to perform these functions
2)Feminists argue that saying the family is essential is ideological as traditional families oppress women

4

What is Parsons theory on the family?

Parsons believes that as society changes, as does the type of family that 'fits' it and the functions it performs change

5

Example of parsons theory?

Shown as over the past 200 years we have gone from pre-industrial to industrial along with this the family type has gone from extended to nuclear

6

Criticisms of the functional fit theory?

- 'too neat' social change doesn't occur in such a social way

- Young and willmott found the extended kind families were still strong in areas of London as late as 1970s

7

What are parsons two essential functions of the family?

Primary Socialisation & stabilisation of adult personalities

8

What is primary socialisation?

This is when the family teaches children the norms and values of society
- Boys learn to adopt instrumental role
- Girls to adopt expressive role

9

What is the stabilisation of adult personalities?

Refers to the emotional security thats achieved within a relationship. Parsons believes that the family is a place where the working man can return from work and be 'distressed' - reducing conflict in society ( Also known as warm bath theory)

10

What are the general criticisms of the Functionalist Perspective?

1) Down plays conflict - Don't discuss the dark side of the family
2) Too deterministic - Ignored the fact children actively create their own personalties and assumes an almost robotic adoption of the norms and values
3)Out of date - women now go to work and play both roles etc