Sociology of Family - Abstracts
Syllabus, Journals, Books on Sociology of Family
Trends in family sociology.
Huber J, Spitze G - Source citation: In: Handbook of sociology, [edited by] Neil J.
Smelser. Newbury Park, California, Sage Publications, 1988. :425-48.
Abstract: Except for the industrial era, family sociology has lacked theories that explain
world patterns over time. Recent work in historical demography, social history,
comparative sociology, and anthropology now suggest how the variables involving food
production permit or encourage monogamy, polygamy, and the conjugal or extended family.
The stimuli of industrial technology, retirement plans, improved contraceptives, and
wives' employment have caused incentives to marry for life and rear children to erode. The
economic cement that once bound spouses for life has been replaced by love, a thin glue
for a 50 year contract. Current research confirms that since 1960 age at first marriage,
divorce, and untraditional household formation are up. Remarriage and fertility are down.
These changes pose new questions. Will the division of household labor shift? Will the
divorce rate fall, level off, or rise? Can western countries maintain fertility at levels
adequate to support their retirement systems? The direct economic benefits of child
rearing currently go to the elderly according to their wage-related contributions. The
persons who rear the child receive no direct economic benefits. Is child rearing rewarding
enough to offset such costs? Does an innate factor drive humans to reproduce regardless of
The Religious Roots of Family Sociology
Adams, Michele - Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological
Abstract: Although scholars have situated the birth of family sociology well into the 20th
century, I suggest that family sociology has roots in the 19th century
religiously-motivated anti-divorce reform movement, as exemplified by the National League
for the Protection of the Family and its primary spokesperson, Reverend Samuel Dike.
Examining original documents authored by Dike in his capacity as the organizations
corresponding secretary, I suggest that Dike came to act as a bridge between the moral
reformers and early family sociologists, aided by sociologist Albion Smalls
long-term participation in the League as an Executive Committee member. Implicitly, Small
provided Dike and the League with a legitimate sociological footing for their reform
discourse at a time when sociology was undergoing initial professionalization in the
United States. This footing allowed the reformers to set the tone and frame the
problem of the family debate for the emerging sub-discipline of family
sociology. In many ways, moral reform rhetoric has continued to frame the discourse for
family sociologists up to the present.
Critical Feminist Pedagogy and Sociology of the Family Courses - Hirshfield, Laura
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association
Abstract: As a feminist scholar and educator, I am committed to using feminist pedagogical
methods. However, the unique nature of the course I teach, Marriage and the Family, poses
difficulties for instructors wishing to adhere to the tenets of critical feminist
pedagogy. In this article, I identify and explore the sources of this mismatch, reviewing
both the origins of critical feminist pedagogy and the peculiarities of Marriage and the
Family courses. I conclude that the solution to this problem does not lie within the
classroom, but within common definitions of feminist pedagogy.
Family Leisure and Changing Ideologies of Parenthood
By Susan M. Shaw, University of Waterloo (January 2008)
Abstract: Examines the significant role that family leisure plays in family life, and the
ways in which family time, family activities, and family vacations reflect and contribute
to changing ideologies of parenthood (including ideologies of motherhood and fatherhood).
Research on this topic has shown family leisure to be a parental commitment, organized and
constructed for the benefit of children and for the family as a whole. At the same time,
family leisure has contradictory meanings and outcomes, because of the work involved and
the difficulties associated with organizing and facilitating positive family experiences.
Moreover, the work of family leisure falls disproportionately to mothers, reducing their
personal time and personal leisure. It is argued that family leisure is a new obligation
of parenthood, and one that has important implications for understanding ideas, beliefs
and practices associated with intensive motherhood and involved fatherhood.
Matrimonial Property in Europe: A Link Between Sociology and Family Law
Branka Reetar, Vol 12.3 ELECTRONIC JOURNAL OF COMPARATIVE LAW
This article questions the justification of the system of community of property (limited
and deferred) in the context of the current notion of marriage and de facto relations
between spouses in Europe, with the primary goal of the community of property from the
first half of the 20th century as its starting point, i.e., the correction of the de facto
inequality of men and women in society.
The basic means for such correction was and still is recognizing the value of indirect
contributions of spouses in the form of childrearing and housework. Accordingly, one may
say that indirect contribution and its equalization with direct contribution are the
common issue of a functional approach to various matrimonial property systems in Europe.
This paper provides an insight into the results of the interdisciplinary research of
indirect contribution in the above legal systems as well as into the de facto division of
childrearing and household duties as the main elements of the contribution. On one hand,
the obtained results lead to a (re)defining of the common problem within various European
systems: the de facto inequality of spouses which has been most efficiently corrected by
the community of property (limited and deferred). On the other hand, new trends in the
field of division of childrearing and household duties and in the field of matrimonial
contracts as well as new goals of the European Union policy with respect to gender
equality, influence a new vision in this matter: will the community of property become a
thing of the past?
Towards a sociology of money and family in the Indian diaspora
Supriya Singh, RMIT University, Contributions to Indian Sociology, Vol. 40, No. 3,
The linking of money, family and migration has become increasingly important with the rise
in Indian remittances to US$ 21.7 billion in 2004, the largest amount of remittances in
the world. The economic importance of remittances has meant that they have primarily been
studied as money flows resulting from direct migration. Some attention has been paid to
their economic impact at the local, regional and national levels in India. In this
article, I argue that sociologists and anthropologists have much to contribute to the
study of remittances, as a social phenomenon linked to family and migration. The emergence
of a transnational Indian family also means the development of a special kind of
transnational family money, where money is equated with or measured against filial care.
In the global context of migration, remittances are one of the ways families negotiate
shifting arrangements of care, responsibility and security for the young, for women and
for the elderly. These perspectives will help develop the sociology of money in India,
connecting it to migration, family, marriage and gender relationships.
Soft ideas and hard methods: family sociologist or social psychologist? Stryker, Sheldon
Publisher: Haworth Press, Inc.
Article Abstract: The author examines his undergraduate and graduate education, which
helped influence his interest in family sociology and ultimately led to his becoming a
Partnership and Parenthood in Post-transitional Societies: Will Specters Be Exorcised?
Nobutaka Fukuda, Aoyama Gakuin University, 5-10-1, Fuchinobe, Sagamihara-shi,
Kanagawa-ken, 229-8558, Japan. Copyright © 2008 The Japan Sociological Society
Abstract: The purpose of this article is to reconsider partnership and parenthood in
post-transitional societies from the viewpoint of sociology. As is well known, after the
end of the Baby Boom, albeit with variations in the tempo and the level, a considerable
decline in fertility has occurred in industrialized countries. Furthermore, this decline
has occurred in tandem with the transformation of partnership such as an increase in the
number of cohabited couples. The causes and effects of this decline in fertility have
hitherto been studied by social scientists such as economists and demographers. Although
the family has been one of the main research interests for sociologists for a long while,
the changes in partnership and fertility behavior in developed countries have not been
sufficiently argued from the perspective of sociological theory on family. In this
article, we will initially compare and contrast two changes in fertility patterns: the
first of these is the fertility decline that occurred around the latter half of the
nineteenth century; the second is the change that has been observed in industrialized
countries since the second half of the 1960s. We will then discuss the difference between
economic and ideational approaches in the explanation of partnership and fertility
changes. Finally, we will examine the convergence and the divergence theories on family
change. This article will conclude with an emphasis on the importance of the middle-range
Children in Family Sociology Texts: United States and Sweden. The Wisconsin Sociologist.
Volume 24, number 1 (winter 1987), p. 49-56.
Abstract: Textbooks from the US & Sweden (N = 18) are examined to determine how family
sociologists deal with children when writing for a College reading public. Textbook
writers appear to be adult-oriented & -positive, presenting dating & spousal
relations & interaction in a generally favorable light, & parent-child relations
& interaction in an unfavorable one. Sibling relations & interaction are almost
totally overlooked or ignored. There are no marked differences between US & Swedish
textbooks in these regards. 4 Tables, 9 References. Modified HA
On the sociology of the family - SIMMEL G. ; RITTER M. ; FRISBY D
Theory, culture & society ISSN 0263-2764
Abstract: In this article on the sociology of family, Simmel locates the study of the
family within contemporary sociology. Utilizing current ethnographic material, Simmel
seeks to counter simple evolutionary assumptions about the development of the family
emerged, in favour of recognition of the variety of its early forms. Arguing that the
family emerged from the relation between mother and child, Simmel examines the
relationships between private property and monogamy as well as economic aspects of the
family and the position of women.
Family Panels to Build a Sociological Perspective on Work-Family Connections
Authors: Michael Gortari, Erik Schwinger, Rebecca M. Thomas, and Clayton D. Peoples,
University of Nevada, Reno - wfnetwork.bc.edu/activities_entry.php?id=6369&area=All
Abstract: The relationship between work and family is crucial, and conveying this is one
of the key tasks of teaching sociological perspectives on the family. But conveying this
reality can be difficult given that directly demonstrating family life situations in the
classroom is very difficult. In this paper, we describe an exercise that brings
work/family situations into the classroom indirectly via a family panel of
guest speakers trained in sociology talking openly about their own families. We expound
upon a recent family panel we conducted, and evaluate its effectiveness. We find the panel
is a positive learning experience for students and makes themes/concepts related to the
crucial work/family connection more real and understandable.
Introduction: The dynamic interplay between work and family is undeniably important. From
the spillover of work stress into family life to the balancing of family and work
responsibilities, the linkages between work and family are immutably significant. In fact,
some argue that conveying the reality that work and family are inseparable is a critical
task of teaching sociological perspectives on the family (e.g. Baca Zinn and Eitzen 1988).
But accomplishing this task can be difficult given that directly demonstrating family life
situations in the classroom is very difficult (Gunter 1974).