family and types of family


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Kamran Ishfaq, Sociologist,
Bahauddin Zakariya University Multan, Pakistan

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family and types of family

  1. 1. Introduction to SociologyFAMILYThere are five social institutions namely, family institution, education institutionreligion institution, political institution, economic institution .So all theseinstitutions are inter related and inter linked with each other as the part ofhuman body. As for as the family institution is concerned. Family as the socialinstitution performs several functions.Kingsly Davis, Specks the four main functions of the family. i. Reproduction. ii. Maintenance.iii. Placement.iv. Socialization. Family is the most important primary group in society. It is the simplest and themost elementary form of society. It is outstanding primary group because childdevelops its basic attitudes with in family. The family is the first group in whichwe found ourselves.The family as an institution is universal. It is the most permanent and the mostpervasive of all social institutions. Family is a small group consisting ordinary offather, mother, one or more children and some times near or distant relatives. 1
  2. 2. Introduction to SociologyMEANING OF FAMILY.The word ‘Family’ has been taken over from Latin word ‘Famulus’ which meansservants. Thus originally family consisted of a man and women with a child orchildren and servants.The meaning of family can be explained better by the following definition’s.Merrill.“Family is the biological social unit composed of husband, wife and children”.M.F. nimkoff.Says that “family is a more or less durable association of husband and wife withor without child or of a man or women alone with children”.Ogburn.“Family is more or less durable association of husband and wife and children”.Clare.“Family is a system of relationship existing between parents and children”.TYPE OF FAMILY:TYPE OF FAMILY BY AUTHORITY: • Patriarchal Family. • Matriarchal Family. • Democratic Family.TYPE OF FAMILY BY STRUCTURE • Joint family system /Extended family • Nuclear family. 2
  3. 3. Introduction to SociologyTYPE OF FAMILY BY SETTLEMENT: • Patrilocal Family. • Matrilocal Family. • Neo local Family.TYPE OF FAMILY BY LINEAGE. • Patrilenial Family. • Matrilenial Family. • Bilateral Family.TYPE OF FAMILY BY AUTHORITY:Patriarchal Family.Patriarchal family is also known as father- centered or father dominated family.With is family he exercises authority and he is the owner and administrator ofthe family property. In the whole family matters he is the final voice and opinion.He is all in all and the all family members subordinate to him. All the majordecisions pertaining to family affairs are taken by him only. No body has theauthority to question to him. But typical patriarchal families are not found todayin the modern industrial families.Matriarchal Family.Matriarchal family is also known as mother- centerd or mother dominatedfamily. She is the head of the family and she exercises authority. She is the ownerof the property and the manager of the house hold. All the members subordinate 3
  4. 4. Introduction to Sociologyto her. She is all in all and the social thinker says that matriarchal family has beenthe earliest type of the family.Democratic Family.In democratic family father and mother enjoy the equal status and opportunitieshave emerged. These types of family exist in industrial societies. We can callthem equalitarian family. They also called modern families.TYPE OF FAMILY BY STRUCTUREJoint family system /Extended family:The joint family system is also known as “undivided” family and some timesextended family. It normally consists of members who at least belong to threegenerations, husband, and wife, their unmarried and married children as well asunmarried grand children. Joint family system mostly exists in our ruralPakistani areas.Husband + wife + Married & Unmarried Children + Married & Unmarriedgrand childrenDefinition of Joint Family: i. The joint family is a mode of combining smaller families into larger family units through the extension of three or more generations including at least grand parents, parents and children’. ii. Joint family may be defined as “A group of people who generally live under one roof, who use common kitchen, who hold common property”. 4
  5. 5. Introduction to SociologyCHARACTERISTICS OF JOINT FAMILY SYSTEM:Depth of generations.The joint family system consists of people of three or more generations includingat least grand parents, parents and children. Sometimes other kith and kin suchas uncles, aunts, cousins and great grandsons also live in the joint family itself.Common roof.Members of the joint family normally reside to gather under the same household. Due to scarcity of accommodation or due to educational and employmentproblems, members of the joint family may reside separately. Still, they try toretain regular contacts and the feeling of belonging to the same family.Common kitchen.Members eat the food prepared jointly at the common kitchen. Normally theeldest female member of the family supervises the work at the kitchen.Common property.The members hold a common property. The head of the family manages thefamily property like a trustee. The total earnings of the members are pooled in toa family treasury and family expenses are met without that.Arranged marriages.In the joint family, the head considers it as his privilege to arrange the marriagesof the members. The individual’s right to select his/ her life partner isundermined. The younger members rarely challenge their decisions and 5
  6. 6. Introduction to Sociologyarrangements. But now a -days, the feelings of younger ones are being given dueto weight age.ProcreationThe size of the joint family is by nature bigger. It is found to be associated withhigher rate of production. It is so because in the past procreation was regarded asa religious duty. Members rarely practiced birth control measures. But today thesituation has changed.Merits & Demerits of the Joint Family System: Merits of Joint family Demerits of Joint familyStable and durable. Retards the development of personalityEnsure the economic progress. Damages individual initiativeServes as a social insurance Narrows down social security. Promotes idleness.Provides psychological security. Not favorable for saving and investmentHelps social control. Denies privacyPromotes cooperative virtue. Undetermined the status of women.Causes for the changes in the joint family system 1. Influence of Education 6
  7. 7. Introduction to SociologyModern system of education introduced by the British Government affectedjoint family in several ways. It has brought about a change in the attitudes,beliefs, values and ideologies of the people. Education which is spreadingeven amongst the females has created and aroused the individualisticfeelings. Education in this way brining changes in relations in the family. Asthe level of education rises, the percentage of those in favor of nuclearfamilies increases and the percentage of those supporting joint family livingdecreases.2. Impact of IndustrializationFactory system of production, new system of organization and managementand new style of life has also affected the joint family. It has made young menand women leave their joint family to far away places in search of betterprospects and employment. Mostly we see that educated person in urbanareas are less in favor of joint family norms.3. Influence of UrbanizationCities provide opportunities to women also for gainful employment andwhen women start earning; she seeks freedom in many spheres. She tries tobreak away more and more from her husband’s family of orientations.4. Change in Marriage SystemChange in the age at marriage, freedom in mate-selection and change in theattitude towards marriage have also affected our family system. Modernyoung men and women not only marry at a late age but also take personal 7
  8. 8. Introduction to Sociology decision in this matter. They do not wait for parental permission. Parent’s role in mate-selection 5. Influence of Western Values The western values relating to modern science, rationalism, individualism, equality, democracy, freedom of women etc. The modern educated youths who came under the influence of these values took the earliest opportunity to become free from the tight grip of the joint family. 6. Awareness among women.Increasing female education, employment opportunities for women createdawareness among women particularly in the middle and upper class. They alsosought chances of becoming “free” from the authoritarian hold of the jointfamily.Nuclear family.It can be defines as “a small group composed of husband and wife and immaturechildren”. In simple words nuclear family is one which consists of the husband,wife and their children. Soon after their marriage, the children leave theirparental home and establish their separate household. Hence nuclear family is anautonomous unit free from the control of the elders. Since there is physicaldistance between parents and their married children, there is minimuminterdependence between them. Thus nuclear family is mostly independent. TheAmerican family is a typical example of the modern independent nuclear family.The nuclear family is a characteristic of all the modern industrial societies. 8
  9. 9. Introduction to SociologyTYPE OF FAMILY BY SETTLEMENT:Patrilocal Family.After the marriage the wife may reside in husband’s parental home.Matrilocal Family.She may stay her parental home to which the husband pays occasional visits toher.Neo local Family.Both of them may establish a separate home of their own.Husband + wife + unmarried childrenTYPE OF FAMILY BY LINEAGE.Patrilenial Family.The decent may be traced through the male lines / husband lines.Matrilenial Family.The decent may be traced through the female lines/ mother line.Bilateral Family.Descent may be traced through both lines. ********************************* 9
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