Stăiculescu 1/2005

Sociologie Românească, Vol. III, no. 1/2005, pp. 142-181.



SR 1 2005 coperta

Noua dinamică macrosocială și transferurile intergeneraționale. Ancheta franceză ”Trei generații”

The new macrosocial dynamics and the intergenerational transfers. The French survey „Three generations”

Ana Rodica Stăiculescu, Daniela Jitcov


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Abstract (Rezumat în limba engleză): The problem of the historical and sociological dimension of the generation notion should be considered again in the sense of a multigenerational society which has the ability to transform the relations between generations and the definition itself (of the generations). The intergenerational conflict involves at least two generations symbolically called by the West-European sociology the Gorbatchev generation and the Internet generation. One justification of the communicational goal between generations is the remarkable difference in perceiving the system of values. If, in the past, the values accepted by the young generation were characterized by immobility (children's future was like their parents’ past and present), now, things are very different: adults are not anything else than some strangers in a new world. Their authority reduces, children look for their behaviour models exclusively among those of their age. In order to surprise the multiplicative dynamic of changes among the generations of the beginning of the millennium I have resorted to the results obtained by the French School of Sociology. Now, the investigation Three Generations is the most complete and recent qualitative and quantitative examination in the European sociology, succeeding in building a systematic and global image of the main transformations of the generations of the end of the 20th century. In an absolutely new way it is made clear what has permitted the emergence of the generation concept understood in a triple dimension: family generation, historical generation and the generation of welfare. The essence of the investigation are the relations among generations simultaneously placed both within the framework of the family and at the border between the familial and the social life. The first empirical data obtained permitted to draw some conclusions: first, the social mobility plays an important role in the functioning and the cultural influence of the “intermediary social solidarities, understood in a Durkheimian way. The transfers between generations happen both by interfamily interactions and through the agency of social change mediators, as trade unions, links of work within the framework of formal groups etc. Second, it has been demonstrated that the relations between sexes directly influence the relations between generations. In spite of the inertia of practices and contradictions between men and women, the relations between the two sexes change in the same direction as those between generations, namely in replacing the traditional hierarchical principles. The cultural influence of children on their parents is one of the effects of returning to the social mobility. The conclusion of the investigation is that, generally, regardless the degree of mobility between generations, the children’s social status becomes an element of the parents’ status, as they get old. Another conclusion is that the evolution and the religious practice over the generations is a structurally declining phenomenon. The investigation confirms the fact that, while family is deeply transforming, an examination of the solidarities between generations shows that these maintain in time. The changes mix with the growing autonomy of generations, not without a certain contradiction between the network of obligations which represents the family solidarities and the norms of independence cultivated by the modern family. For this reason, sometimes, exercising solidarities implies the price of the appearance of tensions and intergenerational conflicts. In our opinion, this type of study is interesting not only in itself, but in the generational perspective, it has the capacity of opening new paths of investigation and of accumulating new data concerning social change, social mobility,  Providence-State” and the migratory, economical and political behaviours.