Race, Generational Status, and the Dynamics of First-Marriage Transitions Among Black Immigrants in the United States

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Abstract

Previous studies give limited attention to the marital outcomes of Black immigrants in the United States. In this study, therefore, the main objective of the analysis is to examine the relationship between race-ethnicity, generational status, and first marriage among Black immigrants. Using data from the American Community Survey, the study tests two hypotheses. The first is that Black immigrants face greater constraints to first-marriage transition compared with non-Black immigrants. The second is that increasing generational status results in a convergence in the outcomes of Black immigrants with those of U.S.-born Blacks. The results show that Black immigrants enter first marriages at older ages compared with non-Black immigrants. With increasing generational status, however, Black immigrants are more likely to enter first marriages at younger ages compared with U.S.-born Blacks, suggesting that as assimilation increases, Black immigrants are less likely to have outcomes that are consistent with a retreat from marriage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1258-1280
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Family Issues
Volume39
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2018

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marriage
immigrant
assimilation
ethnicity
community

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

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abstract = "Previous studies give limited attention to the marital outcomes of Black immigrants in the United States. In this study, therefore, the main objective of the analysis is to examine the relationship between race-ethnicity, generational status, and first marriage among Black immigrants. Using data from the American Community Survey, the study tests two hypotheses. The first is that Black immigrants face greater constraints to first-marriage transition compared with non-Black immigrants. The second is that increasing generational status results in a convergence in the outcomes of Black immigrants with those of U.S.-born Blacks. The results show that Black immigrants enter first marriages at older ages compared with non-Black immigrants. With increasing generational status, however, Black immigrants are more likely to enter first marriages at younger ages compared with U.S.-born Blacks, suggesting that as assimilation increases, Black immigrants are less likely to have outcomes that are consistent with a retreat from marriage.",
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