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Mar 13, 2015 09:46
The reading "Harmony at home" provide us a useful framework for the role of the family in the American society thought last two centuries. The French historian Alexis de Toqueville was the first to analyze this aspect of American society. He noticed some change in American family in comparison to European one. The man`s still the head-family but the woman has a considerable role. Furthermore the relationship between parents and kids has a grade of tenderness and intimacy unknown in Europe of the time, In this reading it also cited a survey that underlies how people still have in great value the idea of a good family as essential for well-being. In fact, nevertheless 38% of population have been through one or more destructive activities, at the same time 92% of the declare the family is highly important as a personal value.
In the Stephany Coontz reading "What really miss about 1950`s" we saw a perfect description of the stereotypical family of the 50`s and also a historical contextualization of it, which is far away from having been a tradition family rather than an experimental one. In fact this family model come from the economic boom. Reasons for its birth are both socials and economics. The need for a family nucleus composed by mam dad and two kids is functional to breadwinner logic and a productive ideal. The thesis of Stephany Coonts is quite fascinating, she thinks that we don`t miss 50`s, we can`t miss a time were prejudices and racism were a bigger issue than today, what we really miss are, the general optimism, the sense of hope, the social mobility, the social security the raising in minimum wage, in a one word, the Welfare. Another good reading about the myth of the model family is Gary Soto "Looking for job". Gary Soto presents a very unconventional family. They are Mexicans, they are poorer than family who live in the neighbored, they look and act differently. The interesting thing is that the reading presents the child`s perspective and his struggle to find a job as a metaphor of change. Like that one could be the way to upward the economic and social ladder. It also showed as the television influences children life and how this desire of change hid the necessity of being accepted by the people the surround us. In fact, I consider this desire of change to be motivated more by child`s want of being part of kids creek than other form of discrimination.
Off course the racial discrimination is present in American 50`s but at the time I think the protagonist of the story experienced another form of exclusion, very common among children of different ages but much transitory and benign than racism.