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Sociology Interview analysis

Asked by rissa | Apr 22, 2008 | GCSE Level > Sociology > Coursework
rissa
rissa asks:

I need to write an interview analysis for my coursework:"As divorce becomes more common, are the long term effects on divorce being forgotten?" I haven't got a clue wat im doing!!!

Please pplease help me!!!!!!!!!

etutor answers:

It is not easy to advise you since you don't provide much information. Have you already completed the interviews? Or are you asking what questions you might present? Who exactly are the respondents? Or is the basis of your question really the effects of divorce on those involved? You will see that I am rather in the dark here, and you may need to contact again with more specific requests.

What I can tell you is that the number of marriages is falling year by year, and in 2007 reached a record low. At the same time, the number of divorce decrees made absolute is rising each year, and is the highest of any EU member state. Marriages that end in divorce are lasting for a lower average time - now just below 9 years. The length of time is still lower where at least one of the couple has previously been divorced. Over 60% of divorces occur among parents with children under 16. About 75% of divorces are initiated by women, the main reason being given (in about 55% of cases) is unreasonable behaviour, followed by adultery (25%). Average ages at divorce are around 36 for husbands and 34 for wives.

The main causes of rising divorce rates are:

Legal changes - in general, over time changes in the law has made divorce easier.
Changes in 'moral and social' attitudes - these have given rise to legal changes favouring easier and quicker divorce, and are often seen in terms of greater individualism causing less focus on family life, whih therefore becomes more fragile.
Loss of informal controls - traditionally close-knit communities ostracised adulterers; contemporary society exhibits much greater geographical mobility and much looser informal controls as a result of the breakdown of community and the authority that often attached to it.
Socio-economic factors - until relatively recently, formal legal divorce was open only to the upper or upper middle classes as it was a very costly procedure; often poorer couples separated instead. Now with changes in the law there has been a greater rate of increase in divorce among the lower socio-economic classes; among highest risk groups are teenage brides and couples with low incomes (and often dependent on state benefirs).

The main consequences of rising divorce rates are:

Simpler procedures and the decreased stigma attached to divorce have generally failed to reduce the associated emotional cost and pain. These are also incurred during the events that lead up to the divorce - e.g. discovery of marital infidelity.

Women are more likely than men to suffer from economic hardship as a result of divorce. They are more likely to receive custody of the children. They often have difficulty in obtaining financial support for the children from their ex-husbands, despite changes in the law in their favour. They are also in a less favourable position in gaining employment, except perhaps in lower-paid jobs such as retailing and restaurant work.

The effects of divorce on children are hotly disputed. Some research suggests that children tend to experience a series of disruptions and changes, which are then likely to lead to lower self-esteem, and to health, educational (absenteeism and twice as likely to leave school with no qualifications), behavioural and social problems, Children of divorced parents are also twice as likelyto have a child before the age of 20, and twice as likely to be married or cohabiting before the age of 20. Children whose parents are divorced are on average less emotionally stable, leave home earlier, are more likely to be unhappy or worried, and are poorer at reading and arithmetic. Most children of divorced parents end up living with their mothers, but if their mothers remarry the children tend to show more problems than those whose mothers remain single. On the other hand, the above problems also exist in a wide range of relationships and families, and may be more related to their socio-economic circumstances than to their marital status.

There are clearly plenty of possible questions here for intervieweees, assuming that your coursework focus is upon divorcees. I hope these ideas are helpful.

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Marissa
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