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

Examine the reasons for changes in the patterns of marriage, cohabitation and divorce in the last 30 years.

Extracts from this document...


E) Examine the reasons for changes in the patterns of marriage, cohabitation and divorce in the last 30 years. Britain today is a much more complex society than in past times, with great diversity in terms of households within which people live. Much of this diversity has been gained at the expense of tradition and there has been a downward trend in the certain types of families. Despite some improvements in recent years in incomes in gender opportunities, equality was neglected much more during post war times. Sociologists argue that the changes to more lenient and less traditional attitudes are responsible for the recent changes in marital behaviour. In recent decades, marriage rates have fallen, divorce rates have risen, and the defining characteristics of marriage have changed. Over the last 30 years, one of the most profound social changes in industrial societies has been the decline in marriage, cohabitation and divorce rates. Families have changed in the last several decades. ...read more.


Divorce rates have also influenced the number of mixed families. The number of single-parent families, too, is rising considerably. Giddens noted that in order to understand families it is necessary to look beyond changes in household work to the relationships within which families live. However, we should not think of compositional changes or changes in family living arrangements. Divorce is more common today than in the past. Reasons for this include legal changes that make it easier to obtain divorce. There are also greater opportunities for women to be economically independent, they are now finding higher and better paid jobs than most men. Single parent households are also more common today, this results of increases in divorce and births before marriage. In the nineteenth century religion prevented many from divorcing. Many feared that they would be condemned for all eternity to hell but the twentieth century saw that religion was no longer regarded with importance. This meant that remarriage was possible as people no longer saw it as important to marry in church and civil marriages occurred more frequently. ...read more.


he functionalist perspective is very traditional, everyone has a certain position and certain functions, which are necessary for the maintenance of the social structure. It focuses on men's and women's different but balancing roles in society. When related to the family, it focuses on the functions of the family within society, as well as concentrating on the functions or roles within the family. Parsons states the functionalist view theorises that the family also has basic functions. The regulation of sexual behaviour is under the influence of marriage and family institutions. Feminist Perspective focuses on the problem of the domination of women by men. It states that the gender differences in the roles of women and men are of cultural origin and have been socially constructed. Today there are a growing number of gay men and women who live together as couples, the movement to legally recognize these unions as marriages is gaining strength across the country. Many of these households now include children. In some cases the parent was previously involved in a heterosexual relationship, but in other cases the couple decides to adopt or conceive a child. ...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 Work & Leisure 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 Work & Leisure essays

  1. “Work Place Discipline” and its influence on nineteenth century English society

    Previously activity was determined by necessity without the need to rely on synchronised time. The rhythm of his work was quite often influenced by nature. In agriculture, certainly, it would be determined by the weather, seasons, the needs of cattle and so on.

  2. To what extent do feminist theories remain relevant for interpreting gendered patterns of work.

    In order to fully document the changes in gendered employment, it is necessary to look at the changes in education, in which feminism had its part. With a more-or-less equal amount of male and female pupils in twentieth and twenty-first centuries compared to few women in the eighteenth-century, a dramatic shift in women's education rights and opportunities can be seen.

  1. 1) Describe the employment opportunities of women in Britain in 1914?

    Quarries, mines and many private firms were brought under government control, to ensure that the extraction of raw materials needed was stable. Fewer men were available to work, especially in heavy industry as well as in the agricultural sector, which had to call upon women in large numbers.

  2. What Changes Occurred For Women Between The 1850's and WW1?

    This proves that better education equals better employment opportunities. Unfortunately, there were still 1 million women and girls in the domestic services. These were mainly working class women who simply could not afford an education. Before this period, women did not have any female role models to look up to,

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