Bringing Family Demography in: Class Variation in Family Behaviors and the Implications for Inequality Patterns
In this paper I highlight the importance of class disparities in family behaviors and their consequences to the life chances of individuals. I emphasize in particular the important role of women's educational attainment plays in determining family behaviors, and the various consequences of class and family interaction to the economic disparities between families and gender inequality within families in particular the gendered division of paid and unpaid work. Recent studies, for example, documented a higher risk of divorce for the lower classes. Similarly, women's education is related to their work activity and the formation of dual-earner families. These differences further deepen disparities between families and individuals that grew up in different types of families located in different class positions. Taking class variation in family behaviors into account is necessary in order to understand the direction of inequalities and how different policies and institutional arrangements may alleviate them.