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What Do You Mean by the Term Family and Mention Its Types ?

  • Date Submitted: 09/28/2011 09:41 PM
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What do you mean by the term family and mention its types ?
Family is a social institution organised to meet certain essential societal needs. It is a group consisting of parents, with or without children and relatives, united by bonds of love and affection and sharing common social activities.
According to Maclver and Page, "Family is a group defined by sex relationship sufficiently precise and enduring to provide for the procreation and upbringing of children."
According to K. Davis, "Family is a group of persons whose relations to one another are based upon consanguinity and who are therefore kin to one another."
In the view of Elliot," Family is the biological social unit composed of husband, wife and children."
Types of Family:
Sociologists have taken different factors as the basis for the classification of family.
1. On the basis of marriage:
On the basis of marriage, family has been classified into three major types:
(a) Monogamous family:
A monogamous family is composed of one man and one woman. In this type of family a man cannot marry more than one wife at a time. It is regarded as an ideal form of family. It minimises emotional and psychological conflict.
(b) Polygynous family:
In this type of family one man marries more than one woman at a time and lives with them in the same house. In this type of family various arrangements are made to adjust the need of many wives.
(c) Polyandrous family:
Polyandrous family is composed of one woman and many men. In this type of family one woman marries many men and lives with them and she is shared by them by turns. The Pandava family is the example of polyandrous family.
2. On the basis of residence:
On the basis of residence family can be classified into following three type:
(a) Patrilocal family:
In this type of family after marriage, the wife goes and lives in the family of her husband. Her husband occupies a central position and plays a dominant role.
(b) Matrilocal family:
In the...

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