Contemporary British Culture and Society

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					Chapter 3
Family & Relationship (2)
 All happy families are
  alike, but every
  unhappy one is
  unhappy in its own
 Leo Tolstoy (1828-
  1910), Anna Karenina,
  I, (1876)
            Focal questions
   How do you think the roles of men and women
    have changed in Britain over the post-war
    period? How can you explain these changes?
   What is the allocation of decision-making in
    modern British families? Why?
   What do you think has caused the ―generation
    gap‖? Is there any remedy for this?
   What is the living situation of old people in
    Britain? Do you think, generally speaking, they
    are living happy lives?
A 1 Husbands & Wives

 Redefinition and
  adjustment of needs
  and values
 The effects of newly-
  emerging work
A 1 Husband and Wives
            Decision Making
   Two “bread-winners”
   More women working full-time
   But...
     A 2 Parents and Children
   The ―generation gap‖
   The rebellious
    teenager? ―The angry
    young man?‖
            A 2 Parents and Children
        Are teenagers really bad in the UK?
   Teenagers are really bad in the UK. They drink
    and drive and steal. They also hurt people and
   I feel like that. Me and my friends can hardly walk
    into a shop without at least one employee
    watching us to make sure we dont shoplift ! its
    awful !
   … yes there are a lot of teens that do go out
    burning things, robbing and fighting but everyone
    seems to ignore the fact that we have bright
    young teens that don't do all that stuff, the media
    focuses on the bad stuff because it sells more
            A 2 Parents and Children
        Are teenagers really bad in the UK?
   Teenagers have always been seen as the "bad"
    generation. Didn't someone like Socrates
    complain about the Ancient Greek teens hanging
    around outside his villa?
   Its cos we're not cute or obedient enough to be
    kids, and not "mature" enough to be seen as
   It'll be over in a few years - then we can complain
    about a whole new generation of teens!
          A 2 Parents and Children
             The Generation Gap
   Bridging the generation gap
   Mark Easton
   7 Aug 08, 08:15 PM GMT
    A 2 Parents and Children
         Chinese vs British
   Chinese parents: more protective &
   Qualities appreciated in parents:
   Being understanding and supporting in
   Allowing freedom of action within a
    framework of constraints
   Unconditional love, conditional freedom
   Offering financial support and contributions
   A primary source of advice (in Britain and
    China alike)
A3         Old Age (population pyramid)

A3                  Old Age
   An ageing population
   Increased life expectancy
   women born immediately after World War Two—
    now retirement age (at 60 years)
   The 'bulge' of the 'baby boomers' of the 1960s
   A sharp tapering for people aged 30 to 36—low
    fertility in the mid to late 1970s
   Another narrowing between the ages of 5 and 19—
    low fertility rates during the late 1980s and 1990s
   Broadening base—increasing number of births
    steadily from mid-2003 onwards
The 1998 Government Green Paper
on Families
   How it wanted to
    strengthen the family
   Marriage and care for
   Where are children best
    brought up: two natural
    parents, married (Guardian,
    5 November 1998, p. 4)
   Changes in gender roles –more flexible, 2 parent
    patriarchal family less dominant
   Responses from the right wing politician &
    church leaders: blame permissive legislation &
    social movements of 1960’s & 1970’s for decline in
    traditional family life
   Responses from the left-wing– Margaret
    Thatcher’s right-wing revolution – rampant
    (unrestrained) individualism & consumer greed
   New range of identities, especially, for women