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Summative Evaluation- Is the Family Disappearing?
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Family Forms From the Past

Hunter-Gatherers
            When studying families we must look at the first family forms and we need to see that they are very different from what we are now.  The earliest form of families that researchers have studied are the Hunter-Gatherers. These hunter-gatherer groups consisted of hordes who lived together to support one another with ties on consanguinity.  Hunting and gathering was the major means subsistence for our ancestors.  Driven by a daily quest for food, both men and women worked full time in search of it (Mandell, 1995).  As we can see, our family systems normally do not hunt and gather our food but use consumerism to support ourselves.  These family forms followed consanguinity lines and had very informal rules and laws.    
 
Agricultural Families
          After hunter-gatherer family forms began to change a new type came into effect when animals were domesticated and plants were grown to produce food (Diamond,1999).  Agricultural families began to grow food and produce animals to feed themselves and their families and the families becamse bigger in order to allow more help to harvest.  Monogamy became the most preferred arrangement for women and they wanted to marry, but men however wanted to have polygamous relationships because he could now support more than one spouse (Maslen,2005).  As we can see through studies this was the start of becoming a more modern family system.  Marriage was starting to play an important part in the family system, but we have monogamous marriages in our canadian society unlike the agricultural families.  Although in different countries around the world there are still agricultural familes and men still have polygamous relationships (Maslen, 2005).
 
Pre-Industrial Families
          At this point in time the economy was struggling and families had to change because of this factor.  In this time period children didn't have the luxury of going to school and enjoying their childhood because they were to go out in the job force and earn money for the family (Maslen, 2004).  When couples were married in this time period it wasn't fully based on love, marriage became and economic necessity so that both of the spouses would work and support themselves and the family (Maslen,2004).
 
Urban Industrial Family
           This time for families improved a great deal and the modern and contemporary family we are accustomed to now was starting to form.  The main points of this time period was that women now did not have to work and could stay home and be the "homemakers".  Things in this time period also changed for children too, they now were not to work and had to go to school untill the age of 16.  We can see that in this time period the family was beginning to be a structure that many people envisioned and dreamed of.  Mandell (1995) states that " For many Canadians in the nineteenth century, the vision of a family was their ideal, but not necessarily their reality".  We can see that the family has changed a great deal from the original Hunter-Gatherer groups and the definition of a family will continue to change.