What are the things that remained the same over generations and what changed?

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I have started writing the paper. I think I have done about 3 pages. I need citations and references. I will provide the readings from the class. I also need more stuff to be added. I need about 4 more pages on top of the 3 I wrote. It can be made up. I have provided some background about my family.

For your final course paper, you will construct a biography of your family. In this biography, you will not only analyze the relationships between your family members, but you will also discuss issues relating to families that we’ve discussed throughout the course. You can choose to either write about your family of origin (to whom you are related by blood or by law) or your family of choice. This essay will tell your family story, and no two will be exactly alike. The only sources you need for this paper are the book and an understanding of your family history. This is your story. You will not be asked to share this paper with anyone and your instructor will maintain complete confidentiality. If you are uncomfortable writing about your own family, please construct a family story and answer the questions below by applying the same concepts to this family.

In your essay, please consider the issues below. You do NOT need to answer all the questions, but rather pick and choose those that are most applicable to your family and/or are most interesting to you.

Your paper should have the following sections:


Begin by giving a brief history of your family. Who is in your family? Explain how you all are connected. What does it mean to be a family? (Everyone should answer this question. Your answer to this question is the thesis that will guide the rest of your paper. Consider this your introduction and section 1 of your paper.)

Descriiptive Overview

How have things changed through the generations of your family?
Have there been interracial/intercultural unions or marriages?
What role has immigration played in your family?
Is cohabitation part of your story? How so?
Are members of your family straight- identified?
Are members of your family LGBTQ – identified?
Are gendered expectations present/taught within your family?
Are men and women treated differently? In home life? In educational opportunities? In work expectations?
Who did what in your family (think about chores, roles as parents, division of labor, sports and recreational opportunities, etc.)?
Has there been divorce/remarriage in your family?
Are you part of a stepfamily? A single-parent family? An adopted or surrogate family?
What about work? Who has access to work, and what returns do they get from it?
How do they juggle both work and family life?
Are there strong or weak intergenerational relationships in your family? How has child care and elder care been handled in the past? How have these things changed?
Other issues that you feel are important to understanding your family? (This can include military service, death or illness of loved ones, family violence, societal violence, judicial issues). (You should answer the questions most relevant to your situation. Consider this section II of your paper.)
Sociological Analysis

Using these questions (and anything else you would like to include), determine which categories of social forces have most powerfully shaped your family. Look at your own family from the outside, using a sociological eye/imagination. Situate your family within the discussions held throughout the course (including social, historical, and economic contexts – review the discussion boards or your reading notes to help you frame your discussion). How have these forces shaped your family? Does your family conform to the trends that have been discussed? How so? How do they differ? Also consider how race, class, gender, and sexuality have affected your family’s formation and trends, and which they are (or are not) following. (Consider this section III of your paper.)


What are the main findings of your paper? What are the things that remained the same over generations and what changed? (Consider this section IV of your paper.)

Paper organization

The paper should be 5-7 pages in length, counting text only, it will be longer if you include pictures (if you use pictures, explain who is pictured, why you chose that picture and what the picture means to you). Please format your paper properly, included your name, a title, and date. Use double spaced pages with one-inch margins and 10 or 12 point font. Number your pages. You should use six to eight course readings for this final paper based on your sociological analysis. You must include a Works Cited (MLA) or References (APA) page with each reading cited independently. Cite the authors of the articles you are using and include page numbers as appropriate. Do not just cite the Risman book as this is improper citation form.

Book Chapters and readings through out the class:

Chapter 2 – Cherlin, Andrew J. “One Thousand and Forty-Nine Reasons Why it’s Hard to Know When a Fact is a Fact,” Pg. 12-16.
Chapter 5 – Coontz, Stephanie. “The Evolution of American Families,” Pg. 36-55.
Coontz_The Evolution of American Families.pdf
Chapter 6 – Mintz, Steven. “American Childhood as a Social and Cultural Construct,” Pg. 56-67.
Mintz “American Childhood as a Social Construct”-1-1.pdf
Chapter 7 – Franklin, Donna. “African Americans and the Birth of the Modern Marriage,” g. 72-83.
Franklin “African Americans and the Birth of the Modern Marriage”.pdf.
Chapter 9 – Rockquemore, Kerry Ann & Loren Henderson. “Interracial Families in Post-Civil Rights America,” Pg. 98-112.
Chapter 10 – Streuning, Karen. “Families “In Law” and Families “In Practice”: Does the Law Recognize Families as they Really Are?” Pg. 116-136.
Chapter 23 – Cowan, Phillip and Carolyn Cowan. “Beyond Family Structure: Family Process Studies Help to Reframe What’s Good for Children,” Phillip A. Cowan, Pg. 358-379.
Online Chapter – Understand how Millennials (those born 1981 to 1996) are reshaping the family. Pew Research Center Document. “As Millennials Near 40, They’re Approaching Family Life Differently Than Previous Generations.” www.pewresearch.org, May 2020. Please click on the link to read.
Chapter 12 – Smock, Pamela J. and Wendy D. Manning. “New Couples, New Families: The Cohabitation Revolution in the United States.” Pg. 149-158.
Chapter 17 – Schwartz, Pepper. “Why is Everyone Afraid of Sex?” Pg. 252-264.
Chapter 28 – Wade, Lisa. “In Other Words: The Class and Race Demographics of LBGT Families.” Pg. 476-479 or Read Online. Also read “Gay Men Used to Earn Less than Straight Men; Now They Earn More.” Harvard Business Review, December 04, 2017. .
Chapter 31 – Furstenberg, Frank Jr. “Diverging Development: The Not-So-Invisible Hand of Social Class in the United States,” Pg. 518-538.
Brief Paper – Lareau, Annette. “CF Briefing Paper: Unequal Childhoods: Inequalities in the Rhythms of Daily Life,” Pg. 539-541.
Chapter 35 – Bearak, Jonathan, and Paula England. “CCF Facts: Women’s Education and Their Likelihood of Marriage: A Historical Reversal,” Pg. 609-614.
Chapter 37 – Myers, Kristen & Lana Demantas. “Being “The Man” without Having a Job and/or Providing Care Instead of “Bread,”” Pg. 632-646 and Holpuch, Amanda. 2020. “The ‘shecession’: why economic crisis is affecting women more than men.” The Guardian.
CCF Symposium: 50 Years since the Equal Pay Act of 1963, Pg. 648-662.
Chapter 38 – Risman, Barbara J. “Families: A Great American Institution,” Pg. 676-683.

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