The way we really are

Essay by mds33200 March 2004

download word file, 5 pages 4.3

Downloaded 88 times

The way we really are

Mark Sarkisian


The author, Coontz shows how the standard of the "traditional family" has changed over the past century. Society must accept the reality of the modern family. Since the 50's, the whole definition on "family" has changed. Marriages are becoming "extinct" and families are breaking away from the old fashioned way of raising children. For example, having both a father and a mother in the home full-time use to be the definition of "the traditional family". Now it hard to believe that the majority of society today is becoming accustomed to single parent homes and women being a contributor to the households income. With today's society filled with these single parent homes, gay and lesbian parents, and families from different ethnic backgrounds, today there is no such thing as the "traditional family.

Americans are forced to re-evaluate their opinion on what the traditional family is made up of.

Children are forced to live in these "changing" families, many not having a mother and a Father, which is the image of what a family used to be defined as.

Coontz asks if we can learn from history of the family. Coontz never will deny the complexity of today's economic issues and their impact on families, which include working mothers, the future of marriage, the well being of children in gay and lesbian families, and the strengths and weaknesses of single parent households.

Coontz Makes two important points. She wants to see family and social changes within a "historical" setting and a "sociological" setting. She also wants to de-politicize the modern "family". She wants to analyze what's working and what's not in families.

The main point of the book seems to be that many American families are in crisis today. The reasons for this...