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  • Donald Swenson

The articles in this issue are categorized into three themes: parenting, gender role transformations and marriage. A sixth article, a research note, maybe linked to the marriage theme devoted to measuring marital dimensions among East Indian marriages.


Miran Lavrič, Sergej Flere, and Tina Cupar, all from the University of Maribor, Slovenia, have engaged in an analysis of a complex-combined data set of nine surveys of youth that were implemented between 2011 and 2015 in nine transitional post-socialist countries. Their primary thesis was to test the proposition that individualization of family life was common among youth in these nations. The Human Development Index was the variable selected to see if youth are becoming more and more individualized beyond their socialization processes rooted in their family life. Some of their findings are intriguing among these youth: increased levels autonomy, more moving away from parents at a younger age, increased levels of conflict with parents, reduced dependency on the father’s input in decision making, and less inclination to marry. However, this was not consistent across the board of these nations. The researchers tested and found, with some exceptions, that the more the modernized was the nation, the higher levels of individualization.

The second article that referred to parenting was written by Gerardo Meil, Jesús Rogero-García, and Romero-Balsas. Their focus was on grandparent child-care that enabled the parents to be more involved in the public work sphere. Their findings revealed that several factors contributed to parents not using their own parents in their care of children. Those families who were dual parent and had higher income family units tended not to take advantage of their own parents caring for their children but, rather, selected alternative, non-familial care such as formal childcare agencies and paid domestic labor. In addition, these parents did have more a direct impact on their children’s socialization by taking parental leave options. They based their conclusions from an analysis of a survey on the use of parental leave conducted in 2012 that included 2304 parents of children under 13 who had at least one living grandparent.


One paper refers to gender role transformations of Filipino husbands/fathers whose wives live apart for extended periods working in North America and Europe. The authors, Florio O. Arguillas, Jr., Lindy B. Williams, and Marie Joy B. Arguillas, documented their research among men and women who migrated to Ireland. For those women who were separated from their husbands for a period of time saw that their husbands did experience gender role transition as they began to take over a number of responsibilities, identified by the authors as “reproductive tasks” previously apportioned to their wives. Several of the men admitted that [End Page 129] they were ill-prepared in doing the many aspects of domestic work. However, they learned the skills of domestic labor with conversations from their wives before their departure, and became knowledgeable through reading cookbooks and consultation with parents and friends, as well as their wives during regular phone conversations. Through a qualitative sample of 60 migrants, in-depth interviews were conducted in Dublin, Galway, Limerick, Leitrim, and Sligo counties with 34 men and women. In a word, the confluence of higher paid wives in comparison to their husbands, the women being away from their husbands, and the husbands’ focusing on reproductive labor in contrast to productive labor resulted in changes in gender transformation. Their study adds to feminist theory that frequently accents gender-role equivalence.


Claudia Geist and Megan M. Reynolds use marital and cohabitation status to ask the question does partnering increase a person’s earning power? It is well known that marital status is associated with higher incomes in the United States. These researchers, though, are interested in a cross-cultural analysis to test the thesis of a positive association between partnering (being married or being in a common-law union) and income. In the current study, the authors use propensity-matching techniques to better model “causal” relationships using cross-sectional data. They tested the effect of marriage and cohabitation on men’s and women’s earnings, net of their human...


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pp. 129-131
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