This course examines what the family is, what it has been, and what it is becoming in a global context. The family is usually a group of people who have intimate social relationships and have a history together. However, a family is far more complex and needs to be understood historically, culturally, economically and for us in particular, sociologically. This course examines the family in socio/cultural context and tries to discover the changing nature of the family as societies and economies change. We will study the family in the United States but then make comparisons to the countries we visit, to see that the family changes (both through evolution and revolution) in time, place and context. We will read about families, visit families, and research the nature of family life in the countries we visit.
Field WorkCountry: Morocco
Day: 1 - Casablanca - Thursday, 3 October
Dating, marriage and family life in Islamic countries are based on the basic tenets of the Islamic faith. The mosque in Casablanca is the third largest mosque in the world and is considered to be on the most modern with superb architecture. Students will visit the mosque (please dress appropriately, for women that means a skirt). We will learn the basic precepts of Islam. We will then visit the home of a middle class family, spend an evening and share a meal. It is an ideal way to see how a family functions and see how they live. We will ask about courtship, marriage, family life, generational relationships, customs and Moroccan lifestyle. Academic Objectives: 1. To understand another religion and how it influences family life 2. To see daily family life and learn about cultural practices in the family 3. To compare western (American) family life with that of another culture 4. To challenge our ethnocentric values about how families and marriage should be, based on our values