Assess the view that the modern family has become more child centred.
Sociologists have different opinions on the definition of childhood. Some believe that childhood is a social construction, rather than a natural state. Today's society has become more child-centred than what it was in the past. Sociologists with the 'March of Progress' view argue that children are now the focal point of the family as children now get to make more decisions, also parents invest more emotionally and financially in their children as they have high aspirations for them. However, those who argue childhood has not improved take the 'conflict view'. These include the two conflict theories; Marxism and Feminism. Marxists argue there is conflict between the bourgeoisie and the proletariat. Feminism argues there is conflict between men and women, which is known as patriarchy. Family's that are child-centred treat their children as a priority, this has become more prominent in modern society due to changes in laws and stigma.
Sue Palmer (2006) says there is a 'toxic childhood' because technology has damaged children's physical, emotional and intellectual development. Technology means children are exposed to 'adult' content, which creates 'social blurring'. Nevertheless, children are now more up-to-date with technology than their parents, so it creates a new culture for them, although this can create a barrier between parents and children.
Neil Postman agrees with Sue Palmer, as he argues that childhood is disappearing due to the introduction of new technology. He argues that the television culture has destroyed the information hierarchy between adults and children as anyone can access the television, it doesn't require any specialist skills, and the television makes 'adult' information easily available to children e.g.; sex, money, violence and death. Postman says that the cause of the disappearance of childhood lies in the rise of television culture and this has meant that...
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