Sociology Assignment Paper on Chapter 14 Reflection: Marriage and Family

Chapter 14 Reflection: Marriage and Family

The 21st century has seen a variety of changes in how the society works and thinks in particular when it comes to the topic of marriage and families or ‘the family’. For instance, today’s society has witnessed changes such as single parenting as well as same-sex marriage. Consequently, there has been a remarkable shift in the manner in which societies are organized. Chapter 14 Reflection: Marriage and Family highlights all of these changes as well as discusses them at length offering insight on what the society thinks of a particular form of family as well as the notions that are presented by particular theories that set to explain both the functions as well as existence of the different variety of families. Nevertheless, similar to other forms of philosophies such as religion or politics, social issues such as families as well as marriages are subjective indicating the need for an analysis of the three chapter article.

A family is defined as a social unit made of a man, woman, and child; in some instances, a pet is also considered as a family member; however, this structure is classic and does not corresponds to the realities of modern society. Therefore, over the last decade, the members of this social unit have changed because of the changes in the marriage institution. A survey conducted by the University of Indiana indicated despite the fact the concept of husband, wife, and children is identified as a family by both majority of the society and the only definition of the family as per the government. Such treatment is unjust because of the liberal values that are prioritized in the 21st century so that other forms such as a single parent with a child, husband, and a wife without children, unmarried couples with children, unmarried couples without children, same-sex couples with children, and same-sex couples without children are also considered as families. This decision allows people shaping their relationships according to their needs and introduces nonconformism into reality; nevertheless, such changes result into the stratification of society and broadening of the existing forms of family together with their acceptance.

From the article, the first reason why the current society is open to new forms family and marriage structures is based on the purpose of the family unit. Families play a significant role in the societies and sociologists have developed a variety of theories to show this. The first theory is functionalism theory that states that the essential functions of the family are sexual, reproductive, educational, and economic. Therefore, the purpose of such cooperation is seen in the profit that people acquire from being together. Another theory presented in the manuscript is the Conflict Theory, which indicates that the family plays a role in resistance against the government. In other words, according to this theory, the family is a private entity that is set to rival the government in bringing up sovereign citizens. This theory has been criticized since it presents the purpose of having a family is to enhance rebellion, which in most instances this, is not the case. Such theory ruins the typical understanding of society and refers to the natural law under which individuals killed each other to survive or acquire some profit. Lastly, the article offers the theory is the Symbolic Interactions concept that indicates a family is a symbol of respect and success. A variety of societies both in the US and in other continents view families as a symbol of respects holding their surname as a representation of detail. Therefore, the scientists try to classify the reasons of the family existence and do it providing various opinions in the form of theories.

Nevertheless, other than the theories the article indicate that there are some issues play against the nucleus family. The first issue that seems to have led to the decline of traditional families is the increase of divorces. The rate of divorce as indicated in the article has been on the rise over the years, and the consequences such as child custody have made marriage as it was held in the past. As a result, marriage loses its value and transforms into a temporary form. The second factor is violence and abuse that has led to the death of spouses as well as children. Some individuals mostly in single parenthood as way as stay single families have had experiences of violence this making them less attracted to the traditional structure. Therefore, the tendency is that people move away from traditional understanding of the family.

In conclusion, Chapter 14 Reflection: Marriage and Family highlights the changes that have been prevalent in the 21st century from the traditional husband, wife, and child setting. Same-sex marriage has been a topic of discussion for a significant amount of time considering the fact it is shaping the current society. Marriages tend to be linked with families and how the society is structured. Consequently, the article addresses the reasons as to why the current society is in acceptance of the new family trends. The article indicates the theories that are related to the current changes in the society. Additionally, the article highlights the issues that face the traditional family structure. Subsequently, the chapter is vivid in its explanation and offers an eye-opening read to the audience.