Category: Sociology of the Family

“It’s the family, stupid”

This week I am teaching framing, the rhetorical construction of social issues.  My students learn the most popular framing strategies and how to recognize them.  Even though I explain, provide examples, counter examples and practice exercises to impart this concept, it’s difficult.  I get it.   It’s also important so semester after semester, year after year I continue to teach framing to undergraduate sociology majors. However, last week President Obama lobbed the simplest and clearest example of framing in his speech on...

Feminism, Family, and Work

This week, Stephanie Coontz contributed an opinion piece to the New York Times in honor of the 50th anniversary of Betty Friedan’s, The Feminine Mystique. Coontz’s article, entitled “Why Gender Equality Stalled,” explores some of the structural and economic reasons hindering equality between men and women. The attitudes and beliefs of individuals are not to blame for the stalled gender revolution; instead, Coontz points to a failing economy and inadequate work-family policies as the major obstacles to gender equality. Coontz...

Why Sociologists Should Be Critical of the New Family Structure Study

An article in Social Science Research is causing quite a stir among sociologists, and is sure to fuel the flames of the debate surrounding gay marriage. Mark Regenerus, sociologist at UT Austin, has just published results from the New Family Structure Study (also see his Slate article). He suggests that children raised in heterosexual intact families fare better than children raised by gays and lesbians. This goes against previous research which indicated the opposite: that children of gay and lesbian...