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Examine the extent and reasons of family diversity in today's society When we say family diversity we mean difference or variation within the family structure

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Laura Hodgson Examine the extent and reasons of family diversity in today's society When we say family diversity we mean difference or variation within the family structure. In this essay I will think about the amount of family diversity whether it's a lot or not much and the possible causes for it. I will look at the opposing views of family diversity from individuals such as Rapoport, Robert Chester, Judith Stacey and the New Right. The nuclear family is by no means the only way to organise living arrangements. With an increased divorce rate, 1 in 3 marriages now ending in divorce, there is the creation of single parent families and reconstituted families. There are now approximately 1.7 million single parent families in Britain, making up about 25% of all families. This leads to diversity because there is a variation to the original nuclear family structure. The New Right such as Charles Murray and Melanie Philips believe that the nuclear family is ideal and are against single parent families and any other family structure. ...read more.


This refers to variation in family structure e.g. single parent families, nuclear, extended, beanpole etc. Another type is cultural diversity. Britain is a multi-cultural society and this looks at the differences in lifestyles of families of different ethnic origins and religious beliefs. For example the stereotypical image of the Afro- Caribbean family in Britain is of a single parent household which tends to be mother-centred. Another example is that in South Asian families, both Hindu and Muslim, there is a tendency for the families to be extended, traditional and patriarchal. There is more acceptance of different culture which is shown by inter-ethnic families. The third type is class. The Rapoports suggest that there may be differences between middle-class and working-class families in terms of the relationship between adults and the way children arse socialised. They also believe that there is also life-course diversity which is the stage in the life cycle of family of individuals. The last type of diversity is cohort. This refers to the periods at which the family has passed through different stages of the life cycle. It is a group of people whose viewpoint depends on the year of birth. ...read more.


Robert Chester came up with the Neo-conventional family in 1985. He believes that there has been a change in the role of women as they are becoming breadwinners but that's about it. His view is that family diversity is minor and the basic features are still the same e.g. most adults still get married and have children and everyone at one point will be part of a conventional family. He also says that we can't judge a family by a snap shot. In conclusion, I think that there is diversity but to a medium degree. I don't think it is wrong because every type of family can function and provide the correct norms and values significant in socialising children. The nuclear family still is very common but we do have to acknowledge other types too but not as a problem. I do agree with Rapoport's five diversity types because I do believe that these exist, but I also do agree with Robert Chester. The main reason for family diversity is the change in trends of divorce leading to single parent families and the increase in other family structures which all combines together to link with a post modern society because we are accepting this variation. Word Count: 950 ...read more.

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