Canadian Middle Class Family 1950s

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Before starting my main topic i would like to explain in brief what family is? The family is the group of people related with each other by birth, by marriage or by any sort of relationship. Basically families are of two types: joint families( large families) consisting of more than four to five people and nuclear families(small families) consisting of three to four persons. Further these families were classified as high class families( very rich people), middle class families( not so rich but those who earn their living) and low class families(homeless people who barely have earnings to survive) according to their standard of living and their earnings. Moving further towards my main topic ‘Canadian middle class family 1950s’. I would also like to mention a little about middle class family that the middle class families are the most hardworking and responsible families among all other discriminated families.


‘During the Great Depression (1929-39) and world war 2 (1939-45) many Canadians were forced to postpone their marriage because of the widespread poverty, government imposed austerity, and physical separation'( Brym J., Lie J.(2018)). So during that phase of life, Canadians were depressed by the conditions and they just wanted to live a happy life by getting married and have children to lead a peaceful life and also enjoy the security that the families get after having children. But as we say thinking needs efforts to conquer the goal. The same way handling the situations during the war time was not easy at all. There were fights regarding working women and some laws were passes declaring that women will not be entering labor workforce. Only men will work to feed the family. Whereas the women were supposed to stay back home and raise their children. men find it quite difficult as it is really very hard for only one person to earn. Raising the children have become very expensive because their education is expensive and moreover, the middle class families have to pay higher income taxes. Middle class families enjoy a benefit as well which is they do not pay the family tax. According to me, after marriage both partners should take the responsibility equally, which happens in the present century today.

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An Historical Anomaly: 1950s

The second world war was considered as the historical anomaly which diverse the trends in divorce, marriage, having children and building relationships. After the world war 2 the nuclear families are diminishing constantly as they are getting weaken day to day. The reason behind this people getting divorced. The time when law of women not entering into the labor workforce marked the beginning of divorce rates to increase gradually. Before 1950s very rare people used to get divorced but later on the divorce rate increases in continuity which is also called crude divorce rate. The marriage rate started falling with increase in divorce rates which is also called crude marriage rates. Not only divorce and marriage rates but also the total fertility rates also staring falling as the woman could have only specific number of children as mentioned in the law passed during 1950. People with same-sex started getting married which was also the main reason of diminishing nuclear families. With the decreasing family sizes, the number of households are increasing due to decrease in fertility rate. The middle class families of Canada are the ones those are affected the most by such unstable and horrible situations.

Displacement of Family Functions

‘According to many modern-day functionalists, the nuclear family has became less prevalent since nineteenth century because many of the traditional functions of the nuclear family have been eroded or partly taken over by other institutions'( Brym J., Lie J.(2018)). Functions such as male dominant society where only men can work and women cannot have been now changed. As now both men and women are considered equal and shares their responsibilities equally. Many issues regarding physical capabilities among partners were weakened but now due to child care services available, both partners got easy way to handle the families. There are many such institutions that serve economic, reproductive, cultural and socialization functions which are reserved for the nuclear families. During early centuries, the cultural societies lacked the social welfare system which is very important for the needy people.

Conflict and Feminist Theory

The term conflict means the dispute or fight between people related to any sort of thing. As my topic is about middle class families of Canada, so the conflict here refers to the changes in power relation among men or women as husband or wife. According to Friedrich Engels, ‘the traditional nuclear family emerged along with private property and inequalities of wealth”( Brym J., Lie J.(2018)). Inequalities regarding wealth could be found out in many societies. In horticulture societies, the people never considered their land as their own private property. They considered their own private property as common public property, as when one family uses the land and later on when the land is not used for a long period of time than any other family who wish to use the land, could cultivate on the same land. During 1950s, the men was the dominating personality of the family who enjoyed the full control of the property or had the right to property and wealth. The sexual and economic control over the women gave the men the advantage to share the property only and only by his offspring. Gender biasness or gender inequality could be removed from world only when private property gets eliminated and economic equality comes in consideration. Feminists believe that capitalism or something similar to capitalism is the result of gender biasness or gender inequality. Due to sex inequality of men or women and men being dominant, the nuclear families were like to end up in 1950s, but the changes in earlier bounded family functions, saved the nuclear families and now nuclear families survive much better than before as there is no gender inequality.


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