Paper 2: Sociological Perspectives on Family

Theoretical Perspectives on Family gives a little more detail about the functionalist and conflict theories on family. Read it before continuing. Be aware that some of this information is new and not presented in the textbook, although this document was already available in the Family lesson. Essay structure may be helpful in organizing your paper.

This assignment will give you another opportunity to illustrate your knowledge and understanding of the course concept of family and how it relates to the real world, especially your personal world. When writing the paper think of how you would explain or teach these concepts to someone who has never heard of them and/or how you would present them in front of a class like this one. How would you describe the concepts to them? What examples would you use to illustrate the concepts. Read the guidelines below for how to approach this activity.

Review the functionalist perspectives on family from Theoretical Perspectives of Family.

  • Define/describe the four key functions of family.
  • Apply and discuss the four key functions to your family of orientation (the family you grew up in) or family of procreation (your spouse and/or children), and
  • give examples from your family to illustrate the functions.
  • Define and/describe the Conflict theory on family and apply it to your family.
  • Finally, Discuss which theory, functionalism or conflict theory, is better for explaining the purpose and role of family in society and why.

This paper should be about 750-1300 word or about 3 to 5 double spaced typed pages. You should be able to prepare your paper in your word processor and then copy it into the text box or upload a Word file. Treat this as a formal paper. Use proper grammar, and logical, readable organizational structure (see attached essay structure example file) for an example of good organizational structure). Refrain from using contractions (don’t, can’t, etc). The format should be paragraphs as opposed to lists.

How the Paper will be graded:

structure (includes organization of information, spelling and grammar, etc. 2 points)

  • Description of functionalist theory terms (2 points)
  • Application of functionalist theory terms to your family (4 points)
  • Application of conflict theory (give a description of the conflict theory on family and apply the theory to your family) (4 points)
  • Discuss which you think is a more accurate theory for explaining the purpose and role of family in society and why. (8 points)

It is not necessary to use references besides our text book and Theoretical Perspectives of Family in this paper, but if you choose to use other references, make sure that they are cited properly in MLA format. Be sure to cite the text book, as everyone should be using it as a starting reference. Also, references like Wikipedia (encyclopedias of any kind) and (dictionaries of any kind) are not acceptable references for a scholarly college level paper. Do not use them.

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