What is the Feminist View of the Family?

Published on 9th June 2017 by

What is the Feminist View of the Family: Sociological perspectives.

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Cornell Notes

Snippet from the Video:

Similar to Marxists, feminists take a critical view of the family. They believe it oppresses women. They focus on unequal division of labour and domestic violence issues. They view gender inequality as something society creates; not as a natural or inevitable occurrence.

There are four main types of feminism explored, referencing how families are defined and how they offer solutions to gender inequality. They are:

1. Liberal feminism

2. Marxist feminism

3. Radical feminism

4. Difference feminism

  • Almost all feminists agree that “gender” is socially constructed. This means that gender roles are learnt rather than determined by biology, and the most significant institution where we are socialised into our appropriate roles and norms of behaviour is the family.
  • Feminists view the family as subservient to the needs of men, thus promoting patriarchal control over women.
  • There are differences between liberal, radical feminists and Marxists’ beliefs as to the cause of women’s subordination and their corresponding solutions.
  • Functionalist, Marxist and feminist theories are all criticised for overlooking family diversity and an individual’s ability to choose their family structure.


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