22. März 2012

SOEP Brown Bag Seminar

SOEP Brown Bag Seminar: Social Change and Family Formation: The German Reunification
Social Change and Family Formation: The German Reunification

Termin

22. März 2012
13:30 - 14:30

Ort

Ferdinand-Friedensburg-Raum
DIW Berlin
Room 2.3.001
Mohrenstraße 58
10117 Berlin

SprecherInnen

Anette Fasang (HU Berlin)

This project uses the German reunification to study how social change impacts two aspects of women's family formation: standardization - the degree to which women's family formation is similar, and pluralization - the development of new family formation patterns. In view of the Second Demographic Transition (SDT), institutional, economic, and ideational explanations for family behavior are discussed. The study proposes a new sequence analytical approach to calculate within and between group differences in family formation trajectories. Findings from the German Life History Study (GLHS) show a rapid de-standardization of family formation among East German women after the reunification. With the breakdown of the communist regime, East German women shifted away from a traditional early marriage pattern to alternative family forms. In contrast, West German women's family formation is more standardized after the reunification than before. They polarize into either a traditional or a delayed family formation pattern. As a result, East and West German women's family formation is just as different in the decades following the reunification as it was in divided Germany. The findings support that de-standardization and pluralization of family formation are transitional features of the SDT with a re-standardization of new family forms, once societies have passed through the SDT.

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