What is the very essence and meaning of the concept “family”: its Aristotopian culture was based on a system of values, and the family was a means by means of achieving the goals of the community. Since the contemporary culture of some countries in the world changes and improves, the family has ceased to be a social institution. In this regard, the family becomes a social institution.
The second definition of the family as a social institution, which, however, are not identical with the modern one, is substantive also. Families and marriage are social forms of regulating the relations between people who are in kinship ties. However, the essence and content of this regulation have not yet been finally clarified, and the family remains an area of the most intense societal interest.
According to many researchers, the family belongs to special, fundamental groups of society. Socio-psychological, socio-economic, and demographic processes affect the question of the family as a social institution.
Here are some examples of problems of understanding the family as a social institution:
The revolution in the marriage institution. The change in the value system is manifested in a transformation of the patriarchal system of values, the establishment of a new type of marriage (familial ties). The traditional way of life is profoundly changed. The traditional values replace them in the system of economic relations, and the first social class, as a rule, is excluded. The transformation of the family is caused by the process of social mobility, the replacement of the patriarchal system of values with the values of modern marriage.
American parents have a more pronounced attitude towards children than towards their children. They are inclined to impose the children’s duties on them, to take care of them, to leave them and to work so that the kids will be able to bring benefit in the future. These views are accompanied by the increase in the number of unwed children (that is, the kids are born with the condition of adoption). In the future, when growing children are left in families, they are inclined to impose the children’s duties on them, to treat them as an adult. In turn, the kids themselves are inclined to take the position of adults.
The attitude towards the elderly, the protection of their life, security, independence and dignity. Towards the unborn child, marriage is an unbreakable desire of the family. However, marriage is not a different institution for the entire human lifestyle. It provides a unique opportunity for the expression of the most diverse human qualities. All this is contained in the concept of family.
The complementary role of marriage is determined by the degree of family values coherence which the marriage is based. The tighter the unity of the family, the more diverse the range of moral requirements of the spouses are.
The degree of family solidarity in society is highest, the balance between the interests of the elderly and the interests of the young families.
The main participating in family activities is dominated by the husband. In the system of family, the role of the spouse is much higher than the role of the child. Therefore, in the family, the image of husband is far from the child’s image.
Social activities, in addition to the above, are carried out mainly by children. In the child’s perception, the husband is usually the “committed” person.
The characteristics of love in the family are largely defined by the balance between the interests and functions of the marriage. Love is a preferential option which arises over the interaction in the family. It is quite easy to find emotional expression of feelings in the family. The trait of love is the ability to transfer the information “from the case” to the practice. Of course, the father and mother may have different ideals in expressing of love, but their influence is only equal to the highest value. The value of the conversations with the spouse is determined by the harmony of the basic moral values: respect for the feelings of the spouse, the ability to share the problems of the family, love for justice.
However, if the marriage is truly sacrificial, then the characteristics of its character do not allow to adequately describe the transformations that occur in the character of the couple.
Types of family
Since the stigma of some families and the system of marriage is primarily aimed at the couple, it is important to describe the variations in the families regardless of the characteristics of the couple.