[OPE-L:3301] Re: patriarchal and bourgeois families?

Paul Cockshott (wpc@cs.strath.ac.uk)
Mon, 7 Oct 1996 02:24:49 -0700 (PDT)

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>Before commenting further on Paul C's [OPE-L:3261] re "labour-power
>shortages and Martians", I need some clarification:
>> Simultaneously, the birth rate declines as the patriarchal family is
>> replaced by the bourgeois one.
>(a) What is the "bourgeois family" and why do you place it in opposition
>to the patriarchal family?
Patriarchal family involves the use of the family members as a labour force
in agrciltural or handicraft production, with the product accruing to the
patriarch. The bourgeois family whilst retaining elements of patriarchal
relations particularly in food processing, is no longer a significant unit
of production in its own right, and as such the children are not parts
of the labour force.

>(b) After answering (a), please explain why we can expect birth rates to
>decline with the ascendency of the "bourgeois family".
No longer the need for a large labour force to maintain production in the
patriarchal oeconomos. Mutual funds replace filial piety.

>(c) you are focusing on changes in the birth rate: what about changes in
>the mortality rate, life expectancy, and average working life? For
>instance, haven't we seen a long-term increase in life expectancy
>alongside advances in medicine and health care?

Decline in mortality tends to preceed not suceed the decline in
birth rate. It is a prime cause for the current very high level of
the latent reserve, but this will be less important in the future.
Paul Cockshott