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Asses the roles and functions of the family according to the functionalist perspective.

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Introduction

Asses the roles and functions of the family according to the functionalist perspective. Talcott parson (1953.) argues that the nuclear family is the best type of family structure for society. The family ensures that children get "primary socialization", witch teaches them the central values of their society. He describes the family as factories that produced human personalities, after these "human personalities are produced" they would have to be maintained through the "stabilization of adult personalities". "Primary socialization" and "stabilization of adult personalities" help the wheels of society turning. But could these "cereal packet families" be dysfunctional, and their patriarchal view cause abuse. Most functionalists believe that the family is a stepping stone of society. It is apart of societies "organs system" that help societies function as a whole. Functionalist study of the family deals with the role that the family plays in maintenance of our social system. Functionalist sees it as very important and with out it society could fall apart. This is because families meet the basic need of society for example they create the next generation of work force.

Middle

Wives on the other hand has an "expressive role", geared to wards primary socialization of the children and meeting the family's emotional needs, she is a home maker and full time house wife rather then the bread winner. Parsons claimed that the division of labour is based on the biological differences between men and women. According to him the roles you partake in the family was purely based on gender more then any thing else. Women are "naturally suited" nurturers and men "naturally" equipped providers. New right sociologist agree with parsons because he claims that the division of labor, is beneficial to both men and women, their children and wider society Feminist on the other had have chosen to comply reject parsons view that the whole division of "labor is natural". Feminist Ann Oakley criticized parson's notion of expressive and instrumental functions as being andocentric. His theories according to her confines women are to traditional roles in the home. Functionalist say that the reasons for societies break down is because of the rising numbers in lone parents, mostly female-headed. They encourage the nuclear family, because like new right sociologist they feel that in lone parent families there is not a structured balance.

Conclusion

Radical feminist as do most feminist believe that the promotion of patriarchy causes abuse because men feel they have to be the head of the house hold. I believe that functionalist idealize the family. The role of the family could be taken on by other institutions. I feel that I have to agree with DH Morgan, I don't feel the family really is needed because most functionalist do not consider that the roles the family take part can not only in the family but others originations could do the same jobs that the family do. Groups like youth clubs, schools, Even a kibbutz system. Also I feel that functionalist have caused the reason for patriarchy I feel because they idealize the role of the family to the point that people start to believe men and women are at different levels. This in turn can cause abuse. But the functionalists do have a point in saying that the nuclear family is needed because it gives children a stable environment. Adults and their children both benefit form having a stable support system in a family unit. ?? ?? ?? ?? Daisy Boois Yr 12 LEE

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