Examining the View that the Traditional Nuclear Family is in Decline

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Examining the View that the Traditional Nuclear Family is in Decline When evaluating the view that the traditional nuclear family (of two opposite sex married parents living in a household that contains only them and their own dependant children), is in decline, I will be taking various pieces of research and evidence from Sociologists, Journalists and other sources, into consideration in order to try to determine how true this view is. The nuclear family would appear to be found internationally and would be described as ‘universal’ by Murdock, varying in popularity from country to country, however I will be concentrating mainly in the UK. The idea that the ‘traditional’ nuclear family is in…show more content…
In the beginning of the twentieth century the role of the average woman and family was very different to that of the later twentieth century, most women would stay at home with their children while their husbands went out to earn money. It was at this time that the average amount of children per woman was six; recent statistics show that it has dropped, alarmingly, to 1.7 (National Office Of Statistics), with many women choosing not to have children at all. Mike Featherstone (1991) proposed that in modern day living, individuals have a great deal more choice and freedom over how to live their lives. They do not have to battle with the parts of their lifestyle that in pre-industrial Britain would have stopped them from doing as they wish. He suggested that it would not be unsurprising at all if family types did not become more diverse and less obscure family types would not rise. This would indeed appear to be so; there is evidence to show that the extended family is increasing at the moment due to the problem of a lack of care homes, rising directly from the increase in life expectancy. This coupled with the idea that teenage pregnancies are on the rise (UK has one of the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Europe!) would suggest that a slight rise in the extended family would be almost definite. It can also be seen that more people are
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