What is socialization? And why do we sociologists *love* using the term? This week we’re diving into both of these questions, and then exploring how families, educational institutions, peers, and the media act as key agents of socialization. We’re guilty of taking this term for granted, so join us as we give socialization the attention it deserves!
Sociology is obviously concerned about connecting private troubles to public issues, as C. Wright Mills once said. Sociologists are also deeply interested in the relationships between people, and the intimate relationships we have with family members. This week, we have a fantastic guest, Dr. Sarah Patterson, who is helping us make sense of these connections. Sarah will be talking with us about families, family demography, and Intergenerational Solidarity Theory. What makes families work or struggle through their interactions? And do families promote positive social solidarity among all its members? Come join us for the conversation!
You find Sarah on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/spattersearch
And find her research at: http://thespattersearch.com
Check out the podcast she co-hosts, New Books Network’s Sociology
I-Fen Lin and Hsueh-Sheng Wu’s 2017 article on how children tend to overreport the time and money they spend on their parents, “Intergenerational Transfer and Reporting Bias: An Application of the MIMIC Model”
Also, here is a source on family solidarity after a parent has passed (a question Ellen posed mid way through the conversation) that Sarah emailed us after we finished recording, from Matthijs Kalmijn and Thomas Leopold titled, “Changing Sibling Relationships After Parents’ Death: The Role of Solidarity and Kinkeeping”
We’re baaaack! This week we’re discussing two major social institutions that are in the midst of serious change: First, the Family! How does sociology look at the family unit? How is the family used as a tool of socialization? What about those ‘non-traditional’ families? Second, that thing that to many of us symbolizes the start of a family– Marriage! We talk about the economic benefits of getting married, our own personal takes on marriage, and the gradual but very real deinstitutionalization of marriage. Listen, learn, and let us know what you think!
Marriage, Family, Socialization
Different types of marriages:
Monogamy involves a family with one wife and one husband.
Polygamy involves multiple spouses.
Endogamy involves marrying a person with similar social characteristics
The Chinese phrase “Men Dang Hu Dui”, or “The doors must match” is a cultural example of endogamy. As Chao Yang in Television and Dating in Contemporary China writes, the phrase “‘Men Dang Hu Dui’ [is] behind traditional arranged marriage, in which being introduced to a marriage partner from a family with similar social rank was the norm” (p. 118).
Exogamy involves marrying someone with different social characteristics
Bigamy is when you marry another person when you’re already married to someone else
“Marriage has become a clear dividing line in a stratified country. Its decline is most pronounced among those who didn’t go beyond high school, as better educated people tend to marry each other. America’s working and middle classes are faring badly, and the research points to unraveling families as one cause.”
Definition: “A weakening of the social norms that define partners’ behavior.”