Functionalist Views of the Family

Functionalist Views of the Family
Functionalism is a social structure theory of society, where by it is believed that we are passive individuals of society, controlled by social institutions. Functionalism revolves around why the society we live in is functional, and on the positive aspects; consensus, social solidarity and social order.
Functionalists refer to the Family as the Primary agent of socialisation, as they view the family as the most important social institution. This is because we spend the most time with our families, and are therefore heavily influenced by the norms and values they teach. They also believe Family's provide society with pre-requisites, for example, as humans we reproduce in order to form society itself, and provide food and water for us to stay alive.  
Many functionalists believe that the Traditional Necleur Family is the most functional, and only kind of family.This includes a clear division between sex and labour; so the mother stays home to look after the children, whilst the dad goes to work and earns the money as the Breadwinner. It it also thought that women are more biologically maternal, and so are designed to be devised.
Feminists disagree with these views of conjugal roles and believe that women are not biologically programmed to be maternal. For example, in the Ike Tribe, women do not show any maternal instinct; as when they are finished breast feeding, the child is expects to fend for themselves. They believe that sexes are equal.
Murdock, a functionalist from modernity, believes that the   Nuclear Family is the only family that can meet the 4 basic needs of individuals and society; satisfaction of the sex drive (monogamously), reproductive, economic and socialisation; and is therefore universal. For example, satisfaction of the sex drive benefits the partners as polygamous is dysfunctional and can cause jealousy, and health issues such as STD's. This therefore creates conflict, resulting in social division, and...