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  1. #1 English 
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    This is a homework related problem.

    My question is not exactly related to science, but the reason why I'm writing it on this website is that I need to ask English-speaking people.

    The question:
    In an article we read in school the following sentence was written:
    This raises fundamental questions about the role of the law in Britain and the police in relationship to commonplace family affinities.
    Could somebody please explain what "commonplace family affinities" means in this sentence?


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  3. #2 Re: English 
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    Quote Originally Posted by thyristor
    This is a homework related problem.

    My question is not exactly related to science, but the reason why I'm writing it on this website is that I need to ask English-speaking people.

    The question:
    In an article we read in school the following sentence was written:
    This raises fundamental questions about the role of the law in Britain and the police in relationship to commonplace family affinities.
    Could somebody please explain what "commonplace family affinities" means in this sentence?
    affinity in this context would mean either relationship by marriage, or a natural relationship to one another through ancestry, bloodline and offspring.

    Marriage would be recognized as a 'commonplace' family affinity, because it was has been considered traditional and a normal practice.

    Although things change............

    So I am presuming that this sentence is discussing how particular British laws and the policing of which have an affect on the family unit, such as for example, many people live together in Britain now without getting formally married. It is called co-habitation, and is recognized legally as a form of 'marriage' whereby the 'spouse' could be entitled to the same rights as in a formal marriage, should the relationship end, for example.

    Does that help in answering your question?


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  4. #3  
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    I forgot to mention the article was about smacking children. DOes it have the same thing then?
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by thyristor
    I forgot to mention the article was about smacking children. DOes it have the same thing then?
    Gosh

    well i don't think the law should say anyone is allowed to smack children!

    Maybe it's about parents being able to smack children because they are their offspring?
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  6. #5  
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    I believe it is referring in context to the relationship of families and their everyday relationships with each other.

    One such is perhaps the parents arguing.
    Another is brother ans sister arguing mor probable.
    Relationships between mother and daughter and father and son, in which case those relationships are more likely to get along and more likely to not.
    "If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe". - Carl Sagan
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  7. #6  
    Forum Masters Degree thyristor's Avatar
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    Ok, thanks :-D
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  8. #7  
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    It is a poorly written sentence. Whoever wrote it could have used ordinary commonplace English but was trying to sound important.

    What I gather is that they were questioning how much the law should become involved in family affairs. For example, it would not be appropriate for somebody to punish a neighbor's or a stranger's child. That would clearly be against the law in most places today. If somebody punishes their own child, within reason, it's nobody else's business. Of course, those lines are becoming more and blurred as the nanny state gets more involved in private affairs. That is true here in the USA as well, but probably more so in Britain.
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  9. #8  
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    It seems to me that the author meant to say “commonplace family affairs” rather than “commonplace family affinities”.
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  10. #9  
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    affinity isn't an out of place word in this context.
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