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examine functionalists and marxisms view on family

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Compare and contrast functionalist and Marxist explanations of the family in 'modern' Britain. In this essay I am going to be comparing and contrasting the views of two sociologists. The sociologists I am discussing are functionalists and Marxists. Functionalists are capitalists and Marxists are communist this creates different opinions of how they think the societies family functions and I am going to be assessing different areas of society in family situations like education, rearing children, domestic work, authority within a family and general opinions of how they think the family functions in modern Britain. Modern Britain is Britain after Primitive communism and the industrial revolution. Primitive communism there was no private family and when poverty was owned collectively. The community was shared and your family was the society. ...read more.


Marxists believe that women have to do most of the domestic work around the house and claim that a women's role within society is seen as 'no better than prostitutes'. They also state domestic work is slave labour that is unpaid. The Functionalists argue against this and state that a study carried out in the 1950's showed that household tasks are becoming more shared throughout sexes. Marxists claim the women mostly do that child rearing. There beliefs are that this work is unpaid, creating more financial dominance for the males within society. A quote from 'a wives role is seen no better than prostitutes.' And this is reflecting inequalities of these members of society. Functionalists do not share this opinion and a study by Young and Wilmot stated 'Fathers are increasing participating in child care activities' Functionalist do agree that the father should have a main role of instrumental (work) ...read more.


Marxists claim that the origin of the family is purely 'private property and state'. This is critised claiming it didn't actually coincide with the emergence of capitalism. Functionalists claim that nuclear families exist all over the world and the history of religion shows that the nuclear family existed pre- revolution. Functionalists claim that the family is evitable and useful. Marxists also claim that within some employment workers cannot strike because of there responsibilities of the family. Females now in modern Britain have to work as well as rear children and Marxists claim that the society is 'oppressing' and 'Exploiting' them. The family have a large consumption rate, i.e. when children are growing up and regularly need new clothes and shoes. With tax on this Marxist claim that society is again against them and taking them away. ...read more.

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