Assess the View That the Nuclear Family Functions to Benefit All It Members and Society of a Whole

1216 WordsNov 13, 20115 Pages
Assess the view that the nuclear family functions to benefit all its members and society as a whole. A nuclear family is universal and is defined as a two generational grouping; consisting of a father, mother and their children, all living in the same household. The idea of the nuclear family was first noticed in Western Europe in 17th century. The concept that narrowly defines a nuclear family is essential to the stability in modern society and has been promoted by modern social conservatives in the United States and has been challenged inadequate to describe the complexity of actual family relations. In this essay, I shall be assessing the views that the nuclear family functions to benefit all its members and society as a whole, from a…show more content…
Therefore, functionalists argue, the nuclear family is a win, win situation for both the family members and the other institutions which make up society as a whole. Various Functionalists have researched and analysed the functions of the nuclear family. Murdock thought that the nuclear family performs four basic functions. One of which is ‘stable satisfaction of the sex drive’. This means with the same partner preventing the social disruption caused by a sexual ‘free-for-all’. Reproduction is aimed to ‘create the next generation’ without which society could not continue. ‘Socialisation of the young’ into society’s shared norms and values and ‘meeting its members economic needs’ such as food and shelter. Parsons list of functions is much shorter than Murdock’s; he argues that the family has to provide for the primary socialization of children by teaching them the acceptable rules and patterns of behaviour to ensure the stabilisation of society. Parsons analysis suggests that as society progresses the family naturally adapts and therefore shows how the family’s functions adapt to a modern society with less emphasis on the need for the family to fulfil the economic maintenance with outside agencies taking on some of the roles of the family. Marxists argue that harmony and the passing on of universal values through socialisation means that

More about Assess the View That the Nuclear Family Functions to Benefit All It Members and Society of a Whole

Open Document