FMST 101 Ch. 2 Studying the Family Notes.pdf

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Family and Human Services
FMST 101
Andrew Quach

FMST 101 Chapter 2: Studying the Family ▯ Why We Should Study the Family ▪ Some practical reasons: 1. Theories and research help us understand ourselves, our families, and our children and their behaviors 2. Improves our ability to think more critically and make informed decisions regarding our families ▯ Eight Theories ▪ For this text, we are going to consider eight theories about families. They are: 1. Structural-functionalist theory 2. Conflict theory 3. Feminist theory 4. Ecological theory 5. Developmental theory 6. Symbolic interactionist theory 7. Social exchange theory 8. Family systems theory ▯ The Ecological Perspective • Ecological theory examines how a family influences and is influenced by its environment • The environment is a series of “systems” that surround individuals and their families • These systems have a bi-directional influence on the individual and the family These systems can help or hinder a child’s/individual development and a family’s functioning ▯ • Microsystem • A variety of structures that have a direct and consistent influence on a person’s life through regular interactions • Mesosytem • The relationship between two or more of these structures • This relationship can exert a larger influence on a person that the microsystem • Exosystem • Settings or events that the child does not experience directly but can still affect their development • Macrosystem • Societal/ Cultural norms, beliefs, and expectations that encompasses the other systems ▯ Symbolic Interaction Perspective • Looks at how the definitions and meaning that we give our symbols, events, and environmental settings affects our attitudes and behaviors. • A symbol can be words, gestures, behaviors, or pictures. • If a symbol, event, or setting has personal value or relevance, there is a greater chance we will react and interact with it. • Definitions and meanings change as we get older. ▯ Symbolic Interaction Perspective ▪ According to symbolic interaction perspective, each family member has multiple important roles in the family. ▪ Roles require different behaviors within and outside the family ▪ People modify and adjust their roles as they interact with other role players ▯ The Social Exchange Perspective • Fundamentals principle is that people seek, through their interactions with others, to maximize their rewards and to minimize their cost • When
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