Reconsidering “Diversification of Family” through Articulation of the Concept of Family in Japan

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  • 「家族の多様化」論再考
  • カゾク ノ タヨウカ ロン サイコウ カゾク ガイネン ノ ブンセツカ オ ツウジテ
  • —家族概念の分節化を通じて—

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Abstract

In the perspective of “diversification of family”, there assume to be increasing potential options of family of choice. The concept of family stipulated in Family Law in Japan, however, still and clearly assigns mutual collaborations for subsistence within and among the family members, which is defined as the product of consanguinity, matrimony and cohabitation. According to family rhetoric theory, even individual and subjective definitions of family can be easily affected by these three elements of legal family definition. Additionally, as the concept of intimacy functions as a new and critical criterion for subjective family definition, needs for subsistence expected in legal family often conflicts with the inevitable instability of intimacy-oriented family. Due to poorly organized access for extra-familial welfare in Japan, contemporary family crisis partly stems from this discrepancy. To address this problem, it is essential to articulate the excessively complex concept of family into some basic needs, which are traditionally expected in family including needs for subsistence, both for political and analytical arguments.

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