Sociology 155/255                                                                                      rev 3/31/2018

 

“The Changing American Family”

Syllabus

 

Spring Quarter, 2018

Class Meets Mondays and Wednesdays, 10:30-11:20

Room: Hewlett 102

Plus once a week section (sign up via Canvas)

 

 

Michael J. Rosenfeld

Professor

Department of Sociology

McClatchy Hall (Building 120) room 124

mrosenfe@stanford.edu

http://www.stanford.edu/~mrosenfe

(NOTE that the website contains reading questions and much additional class information)

Office Hour Wednesdays 1:30-2:30 or by appointment

 

TAs:

Emma Tsurkov

 

 

Overview:

            The American family has changed a great deal in the past few decades. Extra-marital cohabitation and divorce have risen sharply in the past 30 years. Young adults are marrying later than ever before. Interracial marriage and same-sex cohabitation have increased. Same-sex marriage went from being one of the most divisive political issues in the U.S. to the law of the whole U.S. in a remarkably short time. Women’s roles in the labor force have changed, and women’s place in society and within the home seems to have changed as well. What do all these changes mean? Are recent changes in the American family really as dramatic as they seem?  We will examine family change from historical, social, demographic, and legal perspectives.

 

 

Students with Disabilities:

Students with Documented Disabilities: Students who may need an academic accommodation based on the impact of a disability must initiate the request with the Office of Accessible Education (OAE). Professional staff will evaluate the request with required documentation, recommend reasonable accommodations, and prepare an Accommodation Letter for faculty dated in the current quarter in which the request is made. Students should contact the OAE as soon as possible since timely notice is needed to coordinate accommodations. The OAE is located at 563 Salvatierra Walk (phone: 723-1066, URL: http://studentaffairs.stanford.edu/oae).

 

If your OAE accommodation entitles you to use a computer for exams, you will be required to request and use a special OAE scrubbed computer for exams.       

 

Units:

This Course justifies an additional unit of credit, beyond what would be expected based on the typical assignment of class time and outside work. An additional unit represents, on average, 30 additional hours of work expected of a student during the quarter, devoted to the especially heavy reading load and to the preparation of the students’ section presentation, and to the students’ brief GSS research report.

 

 

Computer use in class:

In order to limit distractions in class, there is *no* computer use in class, except by special permission from Professor Rosenfeld.

 

Note: Course enrollment is limited, Sociology majors get preference.

 

 

 

Required Reading, all available at the Stanford Bookstore

* Cherlin, Andrew J. 1992. Marriage, Divorce, Remarriage. Second Edition. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. ISBN-10: 067455082X. $25

* Waite, Linda and Maggie Gallagher. 2001. The Case for Marriage: Why Married People are Happier, Healthier, and Better off Financially. Broadway Books.  ISBN : 0767906322. $11

* DePaulo, Bella. 2007. Singled Out: How Singles are Stereotyped, Stigmatized, and Ignored, and Still Live Happily Ever After. New York, St. Martin’s Press. ISBN-10: 0312340826. $16

* Friedan, Betty. 2001 [1963]. The Feminine Mystique. WW. Norton. ISBN : 0393322572. $11

* Wallerstein, Judith, and Sandra Blakeslee. 2004. Second Chances: Men, Women and Children a Decade After Divorce.  ISBN : 0618446893. $10

* Rosenfeld, Michael J. 2007. The Age of Independence: Interracial Unions, Same-Sex Unions, and the Changing American Family. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. ISBN-10: 0674034902. $20

* Hochschild, Arlie and Anne Machung. 2003 [1989]. The Second Shift. New Updated Edition. Penguin.  ISBN : 0142002925. $11

* Sullivan, Andrew, and Joseph Landau (Eds.). 2004. Same- Sex Marriage: Pro and Con. New York: Vintage. ISBN : 1400078660. $13

* Rudder, Christian. 2014. Dataclysm: Love, Sex, Race, and Identity-- What our Online Lives Tell Us about Our Offline Selves. Broadway Books. ISBN-13: 9780385347396. $10.25

* Cenziper, Debbie and Jim Obergefell. 2017. Love Wins: The Lovers and Lawyers who fought the Landmark Case for Marriage Equality. ISBN 0062456105, $11.

 

 

Further Required Reading, links available from my website:

* Moynihan, Daniel Patrick. 1965. “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action”

* Judith Stacey “Good Riddance to the Family”

* David Popenoe “Two-Parent Families are Better”

* Michael Rosenfeld “Nontraditional Families and Childhood Progress Through School.”

* Michael Rosenfeld and Reuben J. Thomas, "Searching for a Mate: The Rise of the Internet as a Social Intermediary"

* Michael Rosenfeld “Moving a Mountain: The Extraordinary Trajectory of Same-Sex Marriage Approval in the US.”

 

 

 

 

Requirements:

 

For Undergraduates (soc 155):

* Midterm Exam

25%

* Make one 15 minute presentation to discussion section, and lead (along with the TA) the section discussion for that week.

20%

* Regular section participation

10%

* A brief paper using GSS data

10%

* Final Exam

35%

 

 

 

 

 

 

For Graduate Students (soc 255):

* Midterm Exam

20%

* Make one 15 minute presentation to discussion section, and lead (along with the TA) the section discussion for that week.

20%

* Regular section participation

10%

* One 10 minute presentation to class, presenting a different book from the one you presented to section

15%

* A brief paper using GSS data

10%

* Final Exam

25%

 

 

NOTE:

Questions are posted on my website for each reading.

See, specifically, http://www.stanford.edu/~mrosenfe/Soc_155_fam_reading_Q.htm

 

 

 

Week 1:

 

Apr 2

Introduction to the class

Apr 4

Cherlin, Marriage, Divorce, Remarriage, Chapters 1-3 (Demographic Trends, Explanations, and Consequences)

 

 

Week 2:

 

Apr 9

Cherlin, Marriage, Divorce, Remarriage, Chapters 4+5 (Race and Poverty, The State of Our Unions)

Apr 11

Waite and Gallagher, The Case for Marriage, Ch 1-7

 

 

Week 3:

 

Apr 16

Waite and Gallagher, The Case for Marriage, Ch 8-14

Plus DePaulo’s Singled Out, Chapters 1 and 2.

Apr 18

Moynihan “The Negro Family” (available on my website)

 

 

Week 4:

 

Apr 23

Reading from the Feminine Mystique, Chapters 1 and 2, and the first 6 pages of Ch 3 (p 57-127 in the paperback edition)

Apr 25

Reading from the Feminine Mystique, Chapter 4, Chapter 6, chapter 14 and chapter 15 (epilogue).

 

 

Week 5:

 

Apr 30

Wallerstein, Second Chances,

Read Chapters 1-7, plus chapters 15-18, and the Appendix.

 

May 2

Feminine Mystique, Ch 5,

plus

 

Judith Stacey “Good Riddance to the Family” (available on my website)

David Popenoe “Two-Parent Families are Better” (available on my website)

 

 

Week 6:

 

May 7

In-class Midterm

May 9

Rosenfeld, The Age of Independence, Ch 1-3

 

 

Week 7:

 

May 14

Rosenfeld, The Age of Independence, Ch 4-7, see also Rosenfeld

Moving a Mountain: The Extraordinary Trajectory of Same-Sex Marriage Approval in the U.S.” (linked on my website) and “Nontraditional Families and Childhood Progress Through School” (available on my website)

May 16

Sullivan, Same Sex Marriage Pro and Con, chapters 4 and 5

 

Two cases:

Lawrence v. Texas 2003;

DeBoer v. Snyder trial, 2014;

(both linked from my website)

 

 

Week 8:

 

May 21

Love Wins, read the whole book

 

Obergefell. v. Hodges 2015

 

Short GSS proposal due

May 23

 

The Second Shift, chapters 1-6, 16, and 17

 

 

 

Week 9:

 

May 28

Memorial day, No classes

 

May 30

Rudder, Dataclysm, read the whole book

 

 

Week 10:

 

June 4

GSS paper due

 

Rosenfeld and Thomas: Searching for a Mate: The Rise of the Internet as a Social Intermediary

June 6

Last class, review session

 

 

June 12

In-class exam, As scheduled by the Registrar. Tuesday, June 12, 8:30A-11:30A