Hi all im doing an access to he and the unit i am totally stuck on is the sociology one. I have to write an essay on the Gabb and Fink study but to be honest it is all so confusing. I have no idea where to start when writing the essay, how do you start off a sociology essay?? any tips would be fab.
Many thanks Jenny
Hand one hundred people a pen and paper and ask them to define ‘love’; the range of answers will be too extensive to imagine. However, within all of these answers, similarities will be present. Factors such as social class, gender/sex, ethnicity, and age all affect how an individual sees love and behaves in a relationship. Gabb and Fink (2015) identify that ‘relationships comprise pragmatics and emotions, choices and lack of choice, contentment and disenchantment – and all the spectrum of feelings and experiences in-between.’ According to Gabb and Fink (2015) everyday moments and ordinary gestures create the feel and determine the success of a long-term relationship. Fundamentally, relationships and love aren’t what people have created independently but a sociology which is perceived, and subsequently passed down from traditions and past generations. Like all other institutions, sociology changes with time in accordance with the developing views of society. Numerous cultural and socio-economic factors influence long term relationships and are underpinned by sociological perspectives. Structural functionalism heavily focuses on modern society being 4 fold; sexual, reproductive, economic and educational. While a woman offers an affectionate role to the husband, he earns the money to keep the family. In the study of Gabb and Fink (2015) this gendered norm is portrayed through Sumaira’s diary extract. She sees herself as the homemaker; her partner works while she prepares and has dinner on the table for him on his return from work. This can be a difficult view to hold for many since relationships are becoming more equal, and the sole breadwinner of a house is no longer the male in a relationship. Kutsch (2016) has gone as far to identify those men acting as the breadwinners do face negative health effects. Marxism theory focuses on the domination of women by men and does reiterate some aspects of structural functionalism. With the world becoming more industrialized, women are reaching higher classes of work and no longer need to be married to manage their basic survival needs. This theory does ignore the role and position of women in society but women in modern day are more prepared to terminate relationships and love connections if they are no longer working. The feminist approach, in particular radical feminism is directly related to this and recognizes the reliance upon men to procreate. Many people enter into relationships with the same sex where procreation occurs via artificial means or adoption. It is a mark of how society has changed that these relationships can still flourish and women no longer need to rely on men. Symbolic interactionism seeks to study specific sites of interaction and concerns ‘any form of social encounter, in formal or informal situations between two or more individuals’ (Giddens and Sutton, 2014, pp. 144). This perspective represents the meaning attached to symbols and how this helps communication and the ability to view the world. Relationships can be broken when feelings change and Gabb and Fink (2015) identify a relationships success as being dependent on intimate couple knowledge, not materialistic symbols or external validation. The study also identifies that for women, a simple thank you or compliment from their significant other is what makes them feel appreciated. This symbolic interactionism is very different for millennial's (aged 20-35), and more so in western culture, social media is used to symbolize meaning to individuals relationships. Social media allows the world to know the precious investments couples make with one another and what once was symbolic about love has become idealized as a fairy-tale, or dependent upon a social dominance. Gabb and Fink (2015) identify Sumaira’s diary extract as partially framed for the readers and the use of the word perfect is as much for our benefit, as it is hers. The tale recounted by Sumaira is said to be ‘”a childlike quality that draws on the trope of fairy tales.” Hayley’s diary entry (Gabb and Fink, 2015) highlights how she feels selfish over wanting an extra hour to sleep rather than be intimate with her partner. Putting your partner’s needs before your own doesn’t have to happen constantly and to think it does, is a distorted reality that long-term relationships are ownership's, not partnerships. This links to interpretative sociology and the social construction of reality. The norm perceived with respect to intimacy is that men are generally more sexually active than women. Without knowing intimate details about every relationship, it becomes hard to separate the stereotype associated with this. Hayley suffers a real internal struggle to please her partner but also be able to rest enough to manage her working life too.
I am currently doing this assignment and have been sitting for 3 days and not wrote a single word... where to begin??????