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

Examine the view that the nuclear family did not exist in Britain before industrialisation

Extracts from this document...


Examine the view that the nuclear family did not exist in Britain before industrialisation Parsons (1955) a functionalist, argued that the nuclear family did not in Britain before industrialisation. Parsons argued that the pre-industrial families were primarily based on a extended kinship network. The extended family was responsible for the production of food, clothing and shelter for its members, this meant that the extended family lived and worked together, and that the roles within this family were a product of ascription rather than achievement. Members of the family rarely left home to work or live, and hardly ever rejected the roles and status given to them, this was probably because obligation and commitment to the family and community were the key values in pre-industrial times. ...read more.


The nuclear family had also given very clear roles to its adult members, unlike the extended family where all members were equally involved in providing for the family. The male of the family is now the Instrumental leader, responsible for the economic needs of the family, whereas the female is the expressive leader, primarily responsible for the family's emotional welfare and the socialisation of children. This again, in parsons view meant that the extended family was no longer needed and that only the nuclear family could provide what was needed in the new industrial society. However, there are many criticisms of parsons view. Studies of pre-industrial parish records suggest that only 10 per cent of households contained extended kin, meaning that the nuclear family unit was the predominant family structure in many area's rather than the extended family as parson claimed. ...read more.


They also found that the extended family was still based upon a mutual support network and was providing its members with financial help, advice and childcare. Willmott and Young argue that the extended family only went into decline in the 1960's when working class communities were re-housed in towns and council estates. Willmott and Young suggest that the nuclear family only became the norm in the late twentieth century, greatly contradicting parsons perspective. The view that the nuclear family did not exist before industrialisation has been criticised for not providing enough evidence to back up the claim and that parsons idea's are outdated. However there are still many arguments about when the nuclear family was formed, and whether it was a product of industrialisation, or perhaps, a cause. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE International relations 1945-1991 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 GCSE International relations 1945-1991 essays

  1. " Individuals do not 'shape' historical events; the best they can do is to ...

    impressive 20th century figure, we are able to gain a new appreciation of his qualities. The figure of Che Guevara is much too large to pigeonhole as a relic of the 1960s. However there are many different views and opinions on Che Guevara throughout the historical world.

  2. Was Ernesto Guevara Deserved Of His Iconic Status?

    To leave the comfort of a large, well-off upper middle-class background and embark on such a trip required more then the usual youthful thirst for travel, nor could it have been an attempt to impress university entry committees (he had already studied medicine at the University of Buenos Aires)

  1. The Duvalier regime compared to other dictatorships on Haiti during the middle of the ...

    When the Ton Ton Macoutes arrived to assist the fire moved them down. The rebels then fled by foot to some caves where they had previously stored food and ammunition.

  2. Discuss the view that the nuclear family replaced the extended family after industrialisation.

    However the nuclear family is also a specialised agency in child socialisation. Willmott and Young are two functionalists who agree with Parsons view that the nuclear family came about after industrialisation and that before hand we were mostly extended family.

  1. Castro's revolution: WOMEN

    [such duties] are scorned by those [males] who perform them; they are constantly trying to get out of those tasks in order to enter into forces that are actively in combat. While there are accounts of the important jobs women accomplished in the M-26-7, it is hard to determine whether

  2. Sociologists and views on family structure.

    He was referring specifically to the picture of a cosy, large, friendly extended family and its replacement by the nuclear family. He reflected the views of a large number of historians who have studied documentary evidence from the preindustrial period.

  1. Assess to what extent does social policy reflect on the traditional nuclear family

    all of this making it seem socially unacceptable not to be a traditional nuclear family. In 1988 changes in the taxation law meant that cohabiting couples could not claim more tax allowances than a married couple, also prevented from claiming mortgage relief as 2 individuals.

  2. Assess to which extent social policies reflect and support the traditional nuclear family

    This is directly making it beneficial to be married. This social policy also largely supports the traditional nuclear family as in the nuclear family the man and woman are married and it also certainly encourages the co-habiting couple to be married as there are more benefits for married couples.

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