'till Death Us Do Part' 1 Explain The Reasons For The Rising Divorce Rate And Identify The Groups Most At Risk From Divorce And Why.

2114 words - 8 pages

'Till death us do part' - "What exactly is meant by the term 'death'? In early marriages, it referred to the death of a spouse, in more modern terms it can now mean the death of a relationship within a marriage. Values placed upon marriage vows have undertaken different views compared to the past three decades. We now have a more liberal view of marriage and divorce; it is no longer viewed by some as a life long formal contract between partners.Australian divorce rates between 1901 and 1910 measured 0.1 per 1000 population, with a marginal increase to 0.8 per 1000 per population between 1961 and 1970. The sharp rise in divorce from the early 1960's to the 1970's is the result of legislative changes to the Family Law Act 1975, allowing a backlog of applications to be processed. However, the rate continued raising the crude divorce rate in 2001 measured 2.8 per 1000 population (Australian Bureau of Statistics Austats: 1301.0, 2003, p.4).Throughout this paper, I will examine the reasons behind rising divorce rates in Australia. In doing so, identifying the risk factors associated with divorce. The paper will reflect a feminist and functionalist perspective to analyse the question of divorce, from demographical changes, of both the family and the state.'Till death us do part' 2Demographical ChangesDemographically the views of family and marriage arrangements have endured revolutionary changes. At the end of the Second World War, many wed early, reproducing at a phenomenal rate creating a post war baby boom. Women returned to inside the home and men resumed work outside the home. The 1960's saw women having fewer children due to access to contraceptives and abortion preferring to increase educative, career and workforce opportunities.The cost of housing and children created a need for dual income families, changing the expressive and instrumentally structured roles of the parents. (Weeks and Quinn, 2000, p.22-31) Parents began sharing the household roles, to allow each one to benefit from being a paid employee, although the inequality of wages prevented the woman from becoming financially independent. Many women had dual roles of both employee and housekeeper thus, splitting their work and responsibilities between the home and work.A greater emphasis was placed on an individual's right to make informed decisions, choice of personal happiness and to adopt a more individualistic approach to organizing and future planning.The 1970's saw the beginning of a sexual revolution; cohabitation became openly accepted between de facto couples, and marriage no longer viewed as the 'norm'. New legislation of the Family Law Act 1975, allowed couples to make free and informed choices on divorce proceedings.'Till death us do part' 3Family Law Act 1975With changing socio-economic structuring of the family, the Family Law Act 1975 introduced section 39, allowing for dissolution of marriage. Allowing people to apply for divorce after a one-year separation period with 'no...

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