The nuclear family we see today is basically the smallest most regular social structure. Others exist like the company or the church, but at the end of the day most people ether live alone or within one of these family units.

That said, I'd argue this is actually not the most ideal structure, as it often results in those who live in ways that differ (gays, unmarried, alone, single mothers, etc) being unfairly shunned simply for not conforming.

With this, I'm just curious, Are there any examples in history of a family structure that could serve as a possible replacement for the nuclear family?

ps: Apologies if my questions suck, I'm new to this part of stackexchange.

  • 3
    You don't even need to look into history fit this - extended families live with three or more generations with the seniors looking after the children while the middle generation(s) work. This happening even in modern western society with time-rich retirees supporting the children and grandchildren.
    – user13123
    Feb 12 '17 at 0:46
  • 2
    What preliminary research have you done? Questions that include the words, "I'd argue" and "ideal" are frequently troublesome because they indicate a desire for a normative discussion rather than a historical answer.
    – MCW
    Feb 12 '17 at 12:59
  • 1
    And most of the alternatives to the nuclear family are arguably more repressive than the nuclear family. Larger affinity units require more (and more stringent) cultural norms to maintain cohesion. This is not history but sociology - you might want to search for "monkeysphere" and possibly read "Sapiens" by Harari (Beware, Harari is intentionally provocative and depressing) or "exchange entitlements" - (if you can stomach Marxist theory). Also note that the nuclear family is a model, and consult Box's maxim on models.
    – MCW
    Feb 12 '17 at 13:06
  • Methinks this might go better in world-building then history. :)
    – Tirous
    Feb 12 '17 at 16:36

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