Human society was a nomadic society. Before civilization, there was possibly a herd-instinct type of marital relationship. But with the time, the nomadic human society starts evolving into an agricultural society. Now, it was important to know the paternity of the children. So the sex relationship remained unregulated. Only the maternity was possible to know but the paternity left unregulated. The main aim of this article is to provide knowledge about the evolution of the institution of marriage and family.
Introduction to the Institution of Marriage
At some stage of human development, the need arises to know human belongings and ownership of material belongings as a natural result of human and the males should know about their children. This seems to be impossible if the contiguity goes on as a rule.
It is possible to define the paternity if sex relationship can be converted into an exclusive union of men and women. Therefore, we can say that the man’s search to know the paternity of children becomes the seed of the institution of marriage.
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Families and Marriage: A Brief History
According to Sociologists, families are the social institutions that perform important functions for their family members and societies: They produce, nourish, and socialize children; care for weak and elders in the family; becomes the working force for the economy; and meet the emotional needs of family members.
To describe families as social entities recognize because they are a social creation and vary across cultures; to refer to them as institutions means that they take up different responsibilities and play many roles. Cultural differences and the changing nature of families makes defining the family a matter of some contention.
Hence, by the twentieth century, social scientists developed definitions of the family that was inclusive in the sense of capturing the importance of family life across cultures.
Meaning of Marriage
Max Weber states marriage as a “stable sexual relationship” allowed and legitimized by the larger kin group and used to determine rules about property rights for children.
Transformations in Families and Marriages
Gradually, the discovery of agriculture reshaped families. For example, the right to own land and pass it on to legal heirs means shows male domination and eventually, it became more important. Marriage became the center of family life and the formal contractual relationship became the basis between men and women.
Institutionalizing Inequalities: Gender and Race
Although explaining marriage and executing marriage norms have been difficult, there has been a substantial agreement across cultures on one major point. Men should be the head of the family or the powerhouse of the family. And the women should be the obedient party in the family.
But with the passage of time, this ideology is no longer available. One result was that the Middle Ages marriage contracts made men the legal heads of their families. Moreover, it gave control of women and families. But in the later stages, women got the power to hold responsibilities.
Question on Evolution of Institution of Marriage and Family
Question: Briefly describe the concept of marriage.
Answer: The concept of marriage is a sort of man women relationship. One to one relationship in society evolves a unique family system. Living together and procreation of children are the important constituents of a family. Moreover, a family has mutual obligations and responsibility to care about their children.