Diverse Views on Marriage and Family Essays

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For hundreds of years, society has considered marriage as the only legitimate way to beget children. However, as time progresses families and marriage grow farther apart as different social classes have differing opinions as to what constitutes a “good“ family dynamic. Gerson’s The Unfinished Revolution focuses primarily on three categorical families: egalitarian, neo-traditional, and self-reliant and one of her points states that family ideals are hardly permanent. Gerson notes how the gender revolution changes family dynamics, especially in how marriage focuses not on the form of the relationship but the quality. She argues that the gender revolution actually improves family dynamics, especially the egalitarian families where equality…show more content…
Working class women see parenthood as inevitable and even as the pinnacle of their life, whereas middle class women view marriage as more imperative than childrearing. The working class place marriage on a pedestal and see it as something sacred, in a sense. They do not want to have a revolving door of unreliable men in their lives and the lives of their children, whereas middle class women perceive a stigma attached to teenage pregnancies or pregnancies before marriage. However, both classes do see eye to eye in that family and marriage do not always come hand in hand. While it is preferred to have both, marriage and parenting have drifted apart--especially in the working class. Lareau’s Unequal Childhoods studies how social economic class determines how children develop life skills. Different classes establish different standards of living, therefore families will have contrasting perceptions as to what is the social “norm” to childrearing. Lareau has found that those of the working class were more independent than the middle class children simply because they were left to entertain themselves. Middle class children had more structure and organized activities since their parents had the resources to pay for their extracurricular. Thus, those children were found to be more assertive when speaking with adults and functioned well as
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