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Sociology Essay

424 words - 2 pages

Functionalism in a Family

Functionalism in a Family

We Can Work Together

Introduction to Sociology I

Beth Stewart

April 9, 2013

Functionalism in a Family 1

My family would seem very normal from an outside perspective; if someone were to look deep into all the aspects it takes to keep all of us sane and functional, they would be amazed at the effort and dedication it requires. If you look at how “each structure fulfills certain functions, or purposes and activities, to meet different needs that contribute to a society's stability and survival,” (Beth Stewart, lecture ...view middle of the document...

If the father is supposed to provide income, and the mother is supposed to nurture, it can be detrimental to the child and even the spouse if one or both of those roles are not being upheld.

“Some social patterns are dysfunctional because they have a negative impact on a group or society.” (Stewart, lecture 2). If one person (structure) of the family is expected to maintain a certain function and doesn’t uphold that, it will have a negative effect which, if left to cultivate, will cause dysfunction. This idea works the same if one individual has too much power. If that happens, the others can be shut out and the same dysfunction can happen.

Functionalism in a Family 2

“Manifest and latent functions are two kinds of functions. Manifest functions are intended and recognized; they are present and clearly evident. Latent functions are unintended and unrecognized; they are present but not immediately obvious.” (Stewart, lecture 2). The best way to explain this in a family function is through example: Say a parent asks a child to do a chore; the child can either consciously choose to not do it for whatever reasons (manifest) or they could possibly forget just because of other influences (latent). Either way, this is an influence on the family as a whole and can lead to many different outcomes. This is why each member needs to follow through with their structure to help a family function together smoothly.

Work Cited

Beth Stewart, Lecture 2, Functionalism; Grantham University 2012

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