• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss the sociological evidence and arguments for the nuclear family being the ‘basic family unit’

Extracts from this document...


Discuss the sociological evidence and arguments for the nuclear family being the 'basic family unit' Definitions of different family structures Nuclear Family The Nuclear Family which consists of a man and woman committed to each other in Marriage whilst living in a moral and ethical framework is considered as being the best environment in which to raise children. This Unit is usually composed of only father, mother and their immature child/children and is separated in some instances by hundreds of miles from their kin often by the needs of employment, housing and other economic factors. The Nuclear family may also be extended through the marriage of more than one spouse. (Polygamy and polyandry) Polyandry is where a woman can take more than one husband and is still practiced in parts of Tibet. This type of marriage limits the number of births. Polygamy on the other hand is where a man can take more than one wife. This type of marriage maximises the number of births and is often practised in Countries with a high infant mortality rate. ...read more.


Families headed by woman are matrifocal and ones headed by a man are Children from lone parent families tend to have to grow up quicker as they have more adult responsible which can cause problems when defining there role in life. This circle continues with children undisciplined and in many cases unloved and uncared for, creates a multi generational sub culture. Young men and women often having had no parenting input as children become parents themselves at increasing young ages and raise children like themselves which lack in parenting skills and standards of social behaviour. Many children from lone parent families do not have the quality of opportunity that nuclear and extended families do which can leave them socially and educationally deprived. The vast majority of single parent families did not start of this way and are the result of divorce or separation of the parents. Increasing numbers however are considered the norm in some subcultures and children born into this are normally living on or below the poverty line. Constituted Families Emotional devastation to the children involved. ...read more.


This has disastrous effects on the social and cultural place of children in our society. Functional for its members, society and culture. Changes in Basic Family Traditional family of the early 20th century of father, mother children and grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins all living within reasonable distance of each other. In preindustrial societies individuals were bound together with families and the orientetation into which they were born. In the past the smallest families unit was recognised as the nuclear family, but with many more divorces over the last twenty (check dates) years the lone parent family is now the smallest family unit. Murdock argues that the family performs four basic functions in all societies, which he terms the sexual, reproductive, economic and educational and also states that the it is most readily, and satisfactory achieved by persons living together. In order for society to work it is important that children are socialised and their personality learnt and shaped. In the past 150 years as mortality rates have fallen as greater importance is placed on the care and well-being of children Conclusion ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays

  1. A sociological investigation into cohabitation in Britain today.

    This is interesting as it shows an insight into the effects that cohabitation can have on children. There have been many theories as to why cohabitation has increased, alongside the simple and more obvious explanations. Marriage is seen as a more risky choice in a relationship due to the divorce

  2. Attachment and Separation.

    the other party in the relationship, why you are related, what you expect from the relationship in each interaction, and so on. BOWLBY'S CONTRADICTIONS Let us examine Bowlby's contradictions regarding this central arguments which approach personal relationships, psychology and psychopathology in a radically new way.

  1. The writer will define what a family is, describe the three different forms of ...

    Parsons, (1959) further suggested that some disadvantages of the nuclear family is isolation from their other kin (cited from Haralambos & Holborn, 2000) for example with the nuclear family there are not obligated to have relationships with their kin, exploitation in the family which occurs when one person or persons uses tactics

  2. "Working conditions were terrible in 19th century Britain." Does the evidence support this view?

    One of the industries that had expanded very rapidly in the 19th century was coal mining. Industry needed more coal to drive steam engines and locomotives in the factories. To get more coal they had to dig bigger and deeper mines.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work