Week 5 Lecture Notes – Starting Points Ch. 11

Estimated Reading Time 00:10:11

Lecture 04

Families and socialization

“Did you enjoy the test? Was it good? Well it was character building.” -Teppy

Finally we’ll start social institutions!

2 Types of Families Defined
Nuclear family
-typically associated with industrialized society
-fairly small, inward-looking group of people
Extended family
-typically associated with preindustrial societies
-families in a single household with multiple generations

“What’s really interesting is the transition from extended families to nuclear families.” -Teppy

Study by William Goode.
What we’ve seen in the past 100 years: total change in dominant pattern of family life in Western world.

“What you’d see is a gradual convergence of family forms. Family everywhere is moving in this direction. And of course the question is ‘Why?'” -Teppy

*Major worldwide trends*:
1.Consumption patterns: self-sustaining
-Households and family life become insulated as compared to previous family models.

2.Universal trend toward reduced fertilities
-Smaller family sizes. Thanks to condoms!

3.Change in relationships between parents and children
-authority of parents have declined (no need for inheritance)
-families can’t control your access to income anymore.
-lack of financial control leads to total lack of control.
-reduction of patriarchy

4.Changing norms in interpersonal relations
-Increased acceptance of divorce, contraception, cohabitation, premarital sex, etc.

“And this is happening all over the world!” – Teppy
“It’s not that they don’t exist in preindustrial times. But the significant thing is that they have become part of our culture. Part of our norms.” – Teppy

Why these changes?
“How do you understand premarital sex?” -Teppy

Analysis of Goode:
1.Smaller families are more flexible. Families are fairly light and flexible in order to meet the needs of an industrial society.
2.More education for women. Women start challenging men for good jobs.
3.Changes in family form vary: are mediated by cultural and social conditions.

Basic Family Processes
Families, no matter what form or definition, share expected social processes
1.Dependency and Intimacy
Family members are intimate with and dependent on one another.
Intimacy != sex!
Intimacy == exposing your vulnerabilities, etc.
Of course all of these is relative. You’re more likely to go to your mom/dad for help than asking the dude sitting beside you in SOC103 for help.
2.Regulated sexuality
“Typically we expect that *some* members in the family that are having sex with each other. But we’d also expect that *some other members* in a family are *not* having sex with each other.” -Teppy
3.Routine protection
Families prevent bad things from happening to each other.
4.Unequal power
“A family is *rarely* an egalitarian unit.” -Teppy
Parents usually have more power than the children.

“I’m not interested in the legal definition of family. That’s largely irrelevant. I think it’s much more useful if we think about the family not in a legal definition, but in terms of its processes. I say that any group that meets these criteria is a family.” -Teppy

Family Troubles Are Common
Every family has problems! Some have more problems than others.
Families under the greatest stress are most likely to descend into conflict. Domestic violence are not unfamiliar.

Cohesive and Adaptable Families Do Best
Cohesive – members have strong identification with the family as a whole, and with one another.
Adaptable – members are more able to plan and make changes.
^Some traits of these families
1.Have open patterns of communication.
2.Use fair procedures to resolve conflicts
3.Use fair, *even* democratic processes for setting goals
“You can be fair without being democratic.” – Teppy
4.Family culture and ritual ties everyone together.
“I’m talking about a family that actively maintain and develop its culture.” – Teppy

e.g. family with drug addict.
Some families will never talk about this.
“Whenever you got deep secrets of a bad kind, the problems multiply. That’s not going to be a good family.” -Teppy

Two Types of Socialization Defined
Socialization = Primary Socialization + Secondary Socialization
Socialization is a lifelong social learning.
Primary socialization
-takes place in the early years of a person’s life
-fundamental, diffuse, and imposed.
“We’re talking about kids that are completely dependent (economically or otherwise) upon their parents. And their parents kind of have this unparalleled opportunity to shape them. To mould them. For better or for worse.” -Teppy
Secondary socialization
-after childhood
-specific and voluntary
-e.g. occupational socialization

Socialization is lifelong, but early socialization is critical
-One thing that can be said with certainty about socialization is that it goes on for a lifetime.
Primary + Secondary + Anticipatory + Resocialization
Complete overhaul of your personality.
“It really strips your down and moulds you back again.” -Teppy

Through Good Socialization, People Learn to
-obey social rules
-complete school
-earn a living
-sustain close relations
-raise children themselves

“You may think that you are all cool and badass and stuff. But the fact is that you are all sitting here quietly and taking notes. That tells me that you’ve learned obedience. So what can I say? Somebody’s done their job.” -Teppy

People Learn to Make Between I and ME.
Theory by Mead.
I – refers to internal processes
ME – refers to external ones.
The “ME” is what is learned in interaction with others and the environment.
Other people’s attitudes, internalized in the self, constitute the ME.

“The ‘I’ is looking at the ‘ME’.” -Teppy
“It’s a strange experience! Sometimes when you are talking don’t you feel like there’s another ‘you’ floating above yourself saying ‘What the heck is this guy saying?!'” -Teppy

“If you take a Freudian approach — and I don’t mean sex — perhaps you’d gain some insight.” -Teppy

Another Early Step is the Learning of Gender Through Socialization.
-In the process of gender socialization, boys are typically given freedom, while girls are protected from harm.
-e.g. boys are usually given more freedom and girls are more protected from harm.

Soon, Children Are Learning Impersonal Obedience in Schools
-As part of the school’s “hidden curriculum”, children are supposed to learn punctuality, conformity, and obedience.
-The plan is not actually teaching you how to origami or paint with crayons but rather teach you obedience!
-Kindergarten == bootcamp?!
IS THIS THE HIDDEN PURPOSE OF U OF T !?!??!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?
Actual curriculum in business schools: teach you how to dress.

**”For example in Yale, there’s a wine tasting class.” -Teppy**

Different institutions have different focuses. e.g. IBM would want you to be a team player. U of T really doesn’t care one way or another.

Direct vs. Indirect (or Reactive) Socialization
-imprinting of social patterns on blank plates
Direct socialization: intended result of
“Kids are really good imitators. We will reward the good behaviour, and punish the bad behaviour. And we’ll end up with someone we wanted them to be.” – Teppy
-modelling and imitation,
-rewards for good behaviour
-punishments for bad behaviour

Indirect or reactive socialization:
“I’ve *actually* spent some time studying these.” -Teppy
“I’m really interested in bad parenting. As you might have guessed.” -Teppy
-abuse or neglect
-excessive punishment
-inconsistent parenting
“Something that I’ve become very interested in lately.” -Teppy
“Relatively understudied.” -Teppy
Basically: child becomes parent, parent becomes child.
e.g. Imagine you’re a 6 year old kid. And your father is an alcoholic. Your father wants you to clean up his mess and make him dinner.
So child takes on roles of parent. Can be emotional as well.

If a kid is put in that position, he’s likely not gonna do well.

Consequences of parentification
-Intense Anger: parentified children will have a love-hate relationship with their parent
-Difficulty with Adult Attachments: Parentified children, as adults, will have trouble connecting with friends, spouse, and children.
-trouble experiencing healthy intimacy in relationships.

Parenting Styles Make a Difference
The best parenting is authoritative: loving but firm
-some parents reason with their children — this is best
-others use treats or violence
-threats and violence do not predictably achieve the desired results and often achieve undesired results

“This is what research in the West suggest about the best parenting. We don’t know that much about parenting in the East.” -Teppy

Bad and Good Parenting in a Western Individualistic Culture like Canada:
-Power assertion
-Love withdrawal (guilt trip) (tiger mom)
-Inductive: teaching by example; teaching by reason
-Looking for teaching moments: misbehaviour can be used as good “case studies”

(Diane) Baumrind’s Four Parenting Styles:
Authoritative, Authoritarian, Permissive, Neglectful
(refer to picture)
-Research show that the most effective parenting strategy is authoritative, based on high demands and high responsiveness.
May work differently in non-western countries.

(Not that much research on it in non-Western societies.)
This one guy from Israel suggests that authoritarian parenting may not be as bad as it seems.
“I think he’s fudging the results.” -Teppy

What Do Parents Actually Do?
The average employed parent (age 25-64) devotes 1 hour per day (on average) caring for children and others.

Much of What Parents Do Is Indirect
Peers are important too.
But parents are much more influential in the long run. e.g. drug use — through family control of peer associations

Common Consequences of Bad Parenting
-Emotional Difficulties

Is There a Universally Best

New Chinese Study Supports North American Findings…
“Pretty much confirming what I said.” -Teppy

Love and Punishment Matter.
-Results show that children in poor or conflict ridden families tend to act out more than other children (i.e., externalize problems).
-But they do so only if the parents are cold..

Warm is good! Punishment bad.
High levels of parental warmth produce fewer externalizing problems.

Consistent with Earlier Research

Predicts Externalizing Problems, not Internalizing Problems
-when kids are in the situation where there’s a lot of conflict they tend to externalize problems.
-but doesn’t really deal with depression, etc.

Why do some people commit antisocial or deviant act?
1.Shifting/uncertain rules
2.Impossible-to-follow rules
4.Faulty socializtion

Theories of faulty socialization
-theories of trauma and neglect
e.g. parentification is harmful
-theories of attachment
e.g. insecure attachement is harmful
-theories of weak social control
e.g. inadequate.. is harmful

Authoritarian Personality.
Theodor Adorno et al. (member of Frankfurt school of sociology)
-purpose: discover the roots of anti-Semitism
-measured authoritarianism with an “F-scale” (F for fascism)
-conclusion: racism and anti-Semitism associated with fascist tendencies

9 Characteristics
2.Authoritarian Submission
3.Authoritarian Aggression
(That was 3)

Prejudice is a generalized tendency among authoritarian personalities
Prejudice is linked to political and social conservatism
Prejudice is related to a wide range of personal beliefs

Harsh Parenting Unintentionally Produces Authoritarian Children
Parents that:
-Demand unquestioning obedience
-Provide limited affection and respect
-Force the child to displace his/her anger on to “safe” targets
e.g. vulnerable people
-Force the child to sublimate his/her anger in fantasy objects or pointless, repetitive behaviour (ritual, convention)

Another Theory of Faulty Socialization, The Role of Trauma, Stress, and Poor Coping
“My own research (for about 13 years now).” -Teppy
Our 2010 study explored the transmission of problem gambling from parent to child, through a combination of
a) Childhood social learning – direct socialization
b) Childhood distress or trauma – indirect socialization
c) Current stresses and poor coping and supports

Proposed Influences on the Familial Transmission of Problem Gambling
(see picture)

Face-to-Face Interviews
We interviewed 200 adults, 150 of them with a gambling problem
-45 minute self-administered survey
-1 hour open-ended interview
even in the absence of direct socialization…
Gambling addiction results from the combination of
-Childhood trauma
-Adult stress
-Poor Adult coping
50 of each category, and 50 for control group.

The Dostoevsky Case: Direct Socialization Was Not Needed
“He’s probably the world’s most famous problem gambler.” -Teppy
-Freud’s written about him!
-Born in 1821
-His father, a depressed alcoholic, was NOT apparently a gambler
-Fyodor and his siblings were subject to rigid and cold treatment
-In early and middle life, Fyodor embraced a variety of extreme causes, including radical politics

“He was crazy about gambling! He even lost his newly-wed’s wedding gown on their honeymoon.” -Teppy

“His father was a real tyrant. Authoritarian! Gave him a ‘tiger dad’ sort of thing.” -Teppy

-arrested and imprisoned in Siberia
-frail physical help
-all sorts of causes
-poor coping skills
-at age of 50, he becomes a gambling maniac

His addiction lasted about 10 years.

“The Dostoevsky Effect” – by Lorne Tepperman.


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