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Outline and discuss the view that the family functions for the good of society and individuals.

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Introduction

Outline and discuss the view that the family functions for the good of society and individuals In accordance to the Functionalist theory the family are thought of as the cornerstone of our social lives. Functionalists have always talked about the idea of the typical nuclear family, with two parents who are involved in a heterosexual relationship and children, and have always believed this to be society's ideal norm family for the general benefit of all involved. This nuclear family are shaped the way they are for a reason and are made to fit perfectly into the needs of modern society. The Father and Mother, although arguably times are changing both have very differing roles to reflect their positions in society and there role allocation is made to fit the needs and desires of society. The Mother and Father are heterosexual anything else is considered unacceptable in society, they have at least one child although the desired amount is between two and three, the Mother of the family is expected to raise these children and keep the house at an acceptable standard where as the Father is expected to bring home money to provide for his family working more then the Mother and being the main breadwinner of the house. ...read more.

Middle

Society do not allow people to bend the rules without paying consequences for example if a couple are homosexual as opposed to heterosexual in average areas of society they will be thought of as different and "weird" and generally will be rejected by society. This only came about due to hidden messages drumming into people's minds that anything other then heterosexual is not correct. Another example could be the fact that society has created the factor that women work less and look after the children, this means the men go out to work earn the money but don't look after the children in work time, society through hidden messages have put this point into individuals minds and have made sure society accept this point. It is through hidden messages most of society's norms and values are created and for the majority of people we all take in these ideas without question and accept them without question. These hidden messages controlling society are there to maintain consensus and social order and without them society would not be the way it is. Society can only drum these points in through messages though as anything else would potentially result in a backfire and a rebellion against the rules and order of society. ...read more.

Conclusion

The theory also assumes that socialisation is all a one way straight process with no interference yet a large number of children rebel against the rules even made by family members and will never fully accept them. Another large problem is the fact that in the warm bath theory Functionalists assume that family life is perfect and without problems, there are many flaws in this including domestic violence, child abuse and divorces which can all make the family life just as difficult and challenging as that in the industry. The bottom line is that the way family are made and shaped are created in this way to suit society and the way society wants it to be. Society have altered the way the family are to keep individuals as happy as possible because a society without happy individuals would be disjointed and would not function in the way needed. The family are made to suit individuals to a point where they will work and will accept the consensus made by society yet it is still the society who are in control and if they need to change the family to suit themselves it will be changed without most of us realising. James Haley Sociology essay. ...read more.

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