Zoe Krupka writes about the current issues dealing with what it means to be a normal family, and what it means to be a functional or dysfunctional family. She refers to Kay Hymowitz who also writes about the functionality of a family, specifically dealing with single-parents. That is to say, parents that are not married. Hymowitz writes that single motherhood parenting is destructive and harmful to children, and restricts their type of lifestyle. He writes that high levels of poverty and social immobility are linked with the rise of single motherhood, but people seem to disagree at a political level, whether or not this is a beneficial or sustainable lifestyle in regards to the child.
Zoe references plenty of authors in her work, which help create a larger understanding of the issue she’s writing about. Using an article from an Australian psychologist, Bettina Arndt, who has researched into this idea of the ‘casualistation of families’, but rather from a psychological perspective. Unfortunately the article that Zoe refers to in her writing requires a subscription to The Australia, and this limits how many people will and can read into her references. I find that including references that are unreadable and restrictive to the point where you have to pay for access is unprofessional, and lowers the standard of the writing.
These two authors that Zoe references however, she completely disagrees with, saying “It’s both a gross misuse of the evidence base and a stunted template for ethical decision-making.” She says that these two authors are trying to create a new ethical standard regarding how we view productive families. She states that there are so many more factors dependent on the production and success of a family that have to be considered. Competing interests such as the economics, gender, genetics and personal lifestyles can influence how a family will perpetuate.
She uses cold, hard, statistical facts to back up her claims, by attacking what can be seen as a ‘normal family’, to show that in a normal family, there are some large factors that influence the success of that family. She talks about family violence, and how one in five women face violence from their partner, and how 40-60% of divorced women live under the poverty line.
She finishes by stating that we cannot have a blueprint for a perfect family, there are so many personal and contextual events that drive each family individually to the next, that we can’t possibly compare the two.
Krupka Zoe, ZK 2014, ‘The ‘Perfect Family’ has created an ethical and moral vacuum’, The Conversation, 12th September, Viewed 10th April, < http://theconversation.com/the-perfect-family-has-created-an-ethical-and-moral-vacuum-31339 >
Hymowtiz Kay, KH 2014, ‘How Single Motherhood Hurts Kids’, The New York Times, 8th February, Viewed 10th April, < http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/02/08/how-single-motherhood-hurts-kids/?_php=true&_type=blogs&_php=true&_type=blogs&_r=4 >