Theorizing Family Change: A Review and Reconceptualization
deinstitutionalization, diversity, family change, individualization, institutional logics
We review how recent family scholarship theorizes recent family change as either a process of deinstitutionalization, in which family can no longer be understood in institutional terms, or a process of diversification, in which family life is expanding but not losing its institutional character. We argue that both approaches emerge out of and depend on a social institutional framework for understanding family that was developed in 20th‐century sociology. Despite producing a wealth of research, both approaches have difficulty adequately conceptualizing the institutional character of family and providing ways of theorizing family change. We introduce an alternative to a social institutional framework, a Weberian institutional logics approach, which provides a different way to understand the institutional character of family life and thereby affords new interpretations and avenues for theory and research on family change in the 21st century.
Original Publication Citation
Knapp, Stan J. & Greg Wurm. 2019. “Theorizing Family Change: A Review and Reconceptualization.” Journal of Family Theory and Review 11: 212-229.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Knapp, Stan J. and Wurm, Greg, "Theorizing Family Change: A Review and Reconceptualization" (2019). Faculty Publications. 4106.
Journal of Family Theory & Review
Family, Home, and Social Sciences
© 2019 National Council on Family Relations
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