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Family as Agents of Socialization Research Paper


Socialization is a gradual process through which a baby learns the principles, ways of life, conventions, and regulations of his or her society. Sociologists define it as the process through which one inherits cultural beliefs and ideologies of his society. It involves learning of the crucial processes in the society (Mitchell 199).

Agents of socialization refer to the structures and techniques of social organization that control the behavior of an individual in a given society. There are four socialization agents in the society. These include the family, academic institutions, peers, and the media. Socialization agents vary in different societies.

In most circumstances, the family is the key socializing agent. It is the most crucial socialization agent in a primeval society. The human concept of a family is a group of persons who are linked together by resemblance, consanguinity, and co-residence. In many communities, it is the principal agent for children socialization (Rosenberg 672).

There is no set time concerning the commencement and end of socialization. However, some social scientists have devised distinct socialization stages. These include oral, anal, oedipal, and teenage stages. The family is the chief socializing agent in these stages. Oral stage is the stage where an infant is not involved with the whole family but associates with the mother.

The newborn at this point only identifies the mother. The second stage, anal, usually begins after the first year and ends when the child is three years. During anal stage, the infant distinguishes his role from his mother’s. It is also during this stage when the child learns fundamental issues in his society. Oedipal stage starts when the infant is about four years to adolescent.

The child during this stage becomes a full member of the community and identifies his role in society. The last stage, adolescent, starts in puberty, and this is when the child seeks freedom from his parents. It is at this stage when he chooses his career and a spouse. At this stage, he learns about the taboos of his community. This paper will discuss the family as the utmost socialization agent (Berns 316).


The family marks the start of socialization for most people. It assists young ones assimilate their culture and identify with their community. The family also gives the young members their social status. It plays a prominent role in teaching these members of society about the dangers and effects of early sex. Young members of the society usually socialize with their relatives by learning their routines and establishing signals for their wants (Mitchell 296).

The family as an agent of socialization is seen in the fact that the young grow in a vicious association, wherein they are taught to love people who strike and subjugate them. The family thus comprises the initial cell of the society. Children start to watch their parents and siblings for satisfactory ways to intermingle socially, and this remains as a physically powerful influence in their lives.

Family influences on socialization have become highly influential. The family regardless of its nature and size is the fundamental factor in socialization. The young learn how to associate with others by observing their parents. They learn how to behave in disagreements. They also learn how to achieve what they want from others.

Children are socialized via their families control to view the globe in different ways. This may include viewing the nation as an insecure place, a place to train and discover, a place where one needs to take care of himself and where one is sustained and totally loved. Though these lessons keep changing all through the live of an individual, the influence of the family as an agent of socialization never weakens (Berns 398).

As an agent of socialization, the family provides a person with skills and practices necessary for partaking in societal activities. Communal and cultural stability are achieved through the family.

It entails an understanding of how things occur in the society and the development of emotional associations with the community members. Through the family, socialization endows a society member with the responsibility of performing certain tasks in the society. This means that the closest relatives are the most imperative agents of socialization agents.

A family provides to its members love and care. This helps the child to grow socially, emotionally and physically. The parent is the most crucial in the development of the child. By interacting with other family members, the child learns social, acquaintance, loyalty, and patriotic skills. When a child lacks a family to train him in his early stages, then socialization for this child becomes exceedingly hard (Rosenberg 672).

The basic function of the family is to bring persons into being both physically and socially. One’s family experiences, therefore, fluctuate with time. From the children’s point of view, the family is the basic unit for orientation. It positions children socially and plays a key task in their culturalisation and socialization. From parents’ perception, the family is the basic unit of procreation whose goal is to give birth, acculturate and bring children together (Mitchell 199).

The family has an effect on the social relationships in any community. It is depicted as the building social element of the structure of any community. The family as an agent of sociological change is also seen when it comes to patterns of exchanging ideas. There is a set of beliefs in a family that demonstrate how the family members should exchange ideas and interrelate with one another.

The family pattern of exchanging ideas originates from two fundamental principles. This is the level at which communication is valued and the degree at which the family unit strains on similarities and variations concerning beliefs and attitudes (Rosenberg 672).

In communities with sexual distribution of labor, matrimony and the consequential relationship amongst persons, the establishment of a cost effective family unit is necessary. Although the context of a family was initially referred to as blood associations, intellectual anthropologists assert that one must comprehend the blood notion metaphorically. Many communities, however, recognize the family via other contexts such as genetic detachments (Berns 398).

The veracity of a state is the integrity of its maleness. In fact, it can be reproductive if only the right version of sex hierarchy has been developed and reproduced. The family is the chief instrument in this process. It binds all the males and females in a society to a larger combination in which they are supposed to familiarize themselves to one another to be productive.

If the contemporary state is to be set for a war, then the preferred institutional setting to carry out this action is the family. The family as an agent of socialization is thus comprehended as a fundamental building slab in the creation and elevation of the state. This state building idea of the family runs all through to totalitarianism and its characteristic traditions of rebirth after times of fault and decadence (Rosenberg 672).

In the modern society, the family is viewed as a place of safety, which supplies total fulfillment. It encourages closeness, love, and confidence where persons may run away from the struggle of dehumanization. The family is a storehouse of warmth and compassion and stands in resistance to the aggressive world of trade. It safeguards its members against the external world (Mitchell 199).

The family in a customary community forms the basic economic unit. This monetary role of the family has, however, slowly diminished in the modern era. In the US, the family is still immensely influential in the agricultural sector and many other sectors in the country.

The association between the financial role of the family unit, socialization, and artistic values is still complicated. Family units may also affect both national and religious organizations. The surprising esteem for women in any society means that young people in that society tend to doubt strong dictatorial leaders (Berns 398).


The protective nature of the family has currently declined as the ethics of family accomplishment have taken new structures. In the present day, the family is more rewarding than protective. It provides what is crucially needed but absent in other communal arrangements. Family organizations of the ancient times were advanced. Families were steady and happy since they did not have to compete with difficulties such as undisciplined children and separation.

High rates of family separation and births out of wedlock designate a decline in the family institution. Marriages are no longer organized but are for financial gain and children do not add to the family proceeds. The increased position of love signifies a societal change towards supporting emotional implementation and associations within the family. This change essentially deteriorates the family institution (Mitchell 199).

Work Cited

Berns, Roberta. Child, Family, School, Community: Socialization and Support. Belmont: Cengage Learning, 2010. Print

Mitchell, Barbara. Family Matters: An Introduction to Family Sociology. Toronto: Canadian Scholars’ Press, 2008.Print

Rosenberg, Michael. Introduction to Sociology.Routledge: Routledge Publishers, 1983.Print

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