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Read the following statements and say if you agree or disagree with them.





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· Family is often the source of our problems and anxieties.

· There are two general types of family: the nuclear family and the extended family.

· The family unit is in crisis now and traditional family life is a thing of the past.

· Other types of family (e.g. single parent household, homosexual families, etc.) are as good as traditional (nuclear family).

2. Skim the text and check and make sure that you have guessed right.

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There are many different views on family life. Some people could not do without the supportand love of their families. Others say it is the source of most of our problems and anxieties. Whatever the truth is, the family is definitely a powerful symbol. Turn to the television or open a magazine and you will see advertisements featuring happy, balanced families. Politicians often try to win votes by standing for “family values”: respect for parental authority, stability in marriage, chastity and care for the elderly.

Sociologists divide families into two general types: the nuclear family and the extended family, which may include three or moregenerations living together. In industrialized countries, and increasingly in the large cities of developing countries, the nuclear family is regarded as normal. Most people think of it as consisting of two parents and two children. In fact, the number of householdscontaining a nuclear family is shrinking year by year.

There are people who say that the family unit in most countries is in the crisis and that traditional family life is a thing of the past. This is of great concern to those who think a healthy society is dependent upon a stable family life. They see many indications that the family is in decline, in such things as the acceptance of sex before marriage, the increased number of one-parent families, the current high divorce rate and what they see as a lack of discipline within the family.

There is a definition of a “normal family”. Broadly speaking, the family is a group of people related by blood or law, living together or associating with one another for a common purpose. That purpose is usually to provide shelter and food, and to bring up children. The nature of the family keeps changing; there are a number of types of family that exists in a society at any one time.

3. Read the text again and answer the following questions:

1) What is the most general view on family life?

2) How do politicians use family values in their campaigns?

3) What is the extended family?

4) What are the indications that family life is in decline?

5) What is a ‘normal’ family?

 

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