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American Sociological Review

Shira Offer, Claude S Fischer
Why do people maintain ties with individuals whom they find difficult? Standard network theories imply that such alters are avoided or dropped. Drawing on a survey of over 1,100 diverse respondents who described over 12,000 relationships, we examined which among those ties respondents nominated as a person whom they "sometimes find demanding or difficult." Those so listed composed about 15 percent of all alters in the network. After holding ego and alter traits constant, close kin, especially women relatives and aging parents, were especially likely to be named as difficult alters...
February 2018: American Sociological Review
Jonathan Horowitz
What is the worth of a college degree when higher education expands? The relative education hypothesis posits that when college degrees are rare, individuals with more education have less competition to enter highly-skilled occupations. When college degrees are more common, there may not be enough highly-skilled jobs to go around; some college-educated workers lose out to others and are pushed into less-skilled jobs. Using new measurements of occupation-level verbal, quantitative, and analytic skills, this study tests the changing effect of education on skill utilization across 70 years of birth cohorts from 1971 to 2010, net of all other age, period, and cohort trends...
2018: American Sociological Review
Benjamin F Jarvis, Xi Song
Despite the theoretical importance of intragenerational mobility and its connection to intergenerational mobility, no study since the 1970s has documented trends in intragenerational occupational mobility. The present article fills this intellectual gap by presenting evidence of an increasing trend in intragenerational mobility in the United States from 1969 to 2011. We decompose the trend using a nested occupational classification scheme that distinguishes between disaggregated micro-classes and progressively more aggregated meso-classes, macro-classes, and manual and nonmanual sectors...
June 2017: American Sociological Review
Martin Hällsten, Fabian T Pfeffer
We study the role of family wealth for children's educational achievement using novel and unique Swedish register data. In particular, we focus on the relationship between grandparents' wealth and their grandchildren's educational achievement. Doing so allows us to reliably establish the independent role of wealth in contributing to long-term inequalities in opportunity. We use regression models with rich controls to account for observed socioeconomic characteristics of families, cousin fixed effects to net out potentially unobserved grandparental effects, and marginal structural models to account for endogenous selection...
April 2017: American Sociological Review
Derek A Kreager, Jacob T N Young, Dana L Haynie, Martin Bouchard, David R Schaefer, Gary Zajac
Research of inmate social order is a once-vibrant area that receded just as American incarceration rates climbed and the country's carceral contexts dramatically changed. This study reengages inmate society with an abductive mixed methods investigation of informal status within a contemporary men's prison unit. The authors collect narrative and social network data from 133 male inmates housed in a unit of a Pennsylvania medium-security prison. Analyses of inmate narratives suggest that unit "old heads" provide collective goods in the form of mentoring and role modeling that foster a positive and stable peer environment...
2017: American Sociological Review
Margaret Frye
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2017: American Sociological Review
Scott J South, Ying Huang, Amy Spring, Kyle Crowder
This study uses data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, in conjunction with neighborhood-level data from the U.S. decennial census and American Community Survey, to examine the trajectory of individuals' neighborhood characteristics from initial household formation into mid-to-late adulthood. Multilevel growth curve models reveal both different starting points and different life-course trajectories for blacks and whites in neighborhood economic status and neighborhood racial composition. Among respondents who first established an independent household during the 1970s, improvement in neighborhood income over the adult life course is substantially greater for whites than for blacks, while the racial difference in the percentage of neighbors who are non-Hispanic white narrows slightly with age...
December 2016: American Sociological Review
Andrew J Cherlin, David Ribar, Suzumi Yasutake
Many aggregate-level studies suggest a relationship between economic inequality and socio-demographic outcomes such as family formation, health, and mortality; but individual-level evidence is lacking. Nor is there satisfactory evidence on the mechanisms by which inequality may have an effect. We study the determinants of transitions to a nonmarital first birth as a single parent or as a cohabiting parent compared to transitions to marriage prior to a first birth among unmarried, childless young adults in the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, 1997 cohort, from 1997 to 2011...
August 2016: American Sociological Review
April Sutton, Amanda Bosky, Chandra Muller
Tensions between the demands of the knowledge-based economy and remaining, blue-collar jobs underlie renewed debates about whether schools should emphasize career and technical training or college-preparatory curricula. We add a gendered lens to this issue, given the male-dominated nature of blue-collar jobs and women's greater returns to college. Using the ELS:2002, this study exploits spatial variation in school curricula and jobs to investigate local dynamics that shape gender stratification. Results suggest a link between high school training and jobs in blue-collar communities that structures patterns of gender inequality into early adulthood...
August 2016: American Sociological Review
David S Pedulla
Millions of workers are employed in positions that deviate from the full-time, standard employment relationship or work in jobs that are mismatched with their skills, education, or experience. Yet, little is known about how employers evaluate workers who have experienced these employment arrangements, limiting our knowledge about how part-time work, temporary agency employment, and skills underutilization affect workers' labor market opportunities. Drawing on original field and survey experiment data, I examine three questions: (1) What are the consequences of having a nonstandard or mismatched employment history for workers' labor market opportunities? (2) Are the effects of nonstandard or mismatched employment histories different for men and women? and (3) What are the mechanisms linking nonstandard or mismatched employment histories to labor market outcomes? The field experiment shows that skills underutilization is as scarring for workers as a year of unemployment, but that there are limited penalties for workers with histories of temporary agency employment...
April 2016: American Sociological Review
Joshua R Goldstein, Guy Stecklov
Taking advantage of historical census records that include full first and last names, we apply a new approach to measuring the effect of cultural assimilation on economic success for the children of the last great wave of immigrants to the United States. We created a quantitative index of ethnic distinctiveness of first names and show the consequences of ethnic-sounding names for the occupational achievement of the adult children of European migrants. We find a consistent tendency for the children of Irish, Italian, German, and Polish immigrants with more "American"-sounding names to have higher occupational achievement...
February 2016: American Sociological Review
Kenneth F Ferraro, Markus H Schafer, Lindsay R Wilkinson
Drawing from cumulative inequality theory, we examine the relationship between childhood disadvantage and health problems in adulthood. Using two waves of data from Midlife Development in the United States, we investigate whether childhood disadvantage is associated with adult disadvantage, including fewer social resources, and the effect of lifelong disadvantage on health problems measured at the baseline survey and a 10-year follow-up. Findings reveal that childhood socioeconomic disadvantage and frequent abuse by parents are generally associated with fewer adult social resources and more lifestyle risks...
February 2016: American Sociological Review
Dohoon Lee, Sara McLanahan
A growing literature documents the importance of family instability for child wellbeing. In this article, we use longitudinal data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study to examine the impacts of family instability on children's cognitive and socioemotional development in early and middle childhood. We extend existing research in several ways: (1) by distinguishing between the number and types of family structure changes; (2) by accounting for time-varying as well as time-constant confounding; and (3) by assessing racial/ethnic and gender differences in family instability effects...
August 2015: American Sociological Review
Hexuan Liu, Guang Guo
This study demonstrates body mass in middle and late adulthood as a consequence of the complex interplay among individuals' genes, lifetime socioeconomic experiences, and the historical context in which they live. Drawing on approximately 9,000 genetic samples from the Health and Retirement Study, we first investigate how socioeconomic status (SES) over the life course moderates the impact of 32 established obesity-related genetic variants on body mass index (BMI) in middle and late adulthood. Further, we consider differences across birth cohorts in the genetic influence on BMI and cohort variations in the moderating effects of life-course SES on the genetic influence...
August 2015: American Sociological Review
Margaret Frye, Jenny Trinitapoli
Research on young-adult sexuality in sub-Saharan Africa typically conceptualizes sex as an individual-level risk behavior. We introduce a new approach that connects the conditions surrounding the initiation of sex with subsequent relationship well-being, examines relationships as sequences of interdependent events, and indexes relationship experiences to individually held ideals. New card-sort data from southern Malawi capture young women's relationship experiences and their ideals in a sequential framework...
June 2015: American Sociological Review
Xi Song, Cameron D Campbell, James Z Lee
Patrilineality, the organization of kinship, inheritance, and other key social processes based on patrilineal male descent, has been a salient feature of social organization in China and many other societies for centuries. Because continuity or growth of the patrilineage was the central focus of reproductive strategies in such societies, we introduce the number of patrilineal male descendants generations later as a stratification outcome. By reconstructing and analyzing 20,000 patrilineages in two prospective, multi-generational population databases from 18(th) and 19(th) century China, we show that patrilineages founded by high status males had higher growth rates for the next 150 years...
June 2015: American Sociological Review
Matthew Hall, Kyle Crowder, Amy Spring
In this article, we use data on virtually all foreclosure events between 2005 and 2009 to calculate neighborhood foreclosure rates for nearly all block groups in the United States to assess the impact of housing foreclosures on neighborhood racial/ethnic change and on broader patterns of racial residential segregation. We find that the foreclosure crisis was patterned strongly along racial lines: black, Latino, and racially integrated neighborhoods had exceptionally high foreclosure rates. Multilevel models of racial/ethnic change reveal that foreclosure concentrations were linked to declining shares of whites and expanding shares of black and Latino residents...
June 2015: American Sociological Review
David S Pedulla, Sarah Thébaud
Why has progress toward gender equality in the workplace and at home stalled in recent decades? A growing body of scholarship suggests that persistently gendered workplace norms and policies limit men's and women's ability to create gender egalitarian relationships at home. In this article, we build on and extend prior research by examining the extent to which institutional constraints, including workplace policies, affect young, unmarried men's and women's preferences for their future work-family arrangements...
February 2015: American Sociological Review
Deirdre Bloome
Racial disparity in family incomes remained remarkably stable over the past 40 years in the United States despite major legal and social reforms. Previous scholarship presents two primary explanations for persistent inequality through a period of progressive change. One highlights continuity: because socioeconomic status is transmitted from parents to children, disparities created through histories of discrimination and opportunity denial may dissipate slowly. The second highlights change: because family income results from joining individual earnings in family units, changing family compositions can offset individuals' changing economic chances...
December 2014: American Sociological Review
Daniel A McFarland, James Moody, David Diehl, Jeffrey A Smith, Reuben J Thomas
Adolescent societies-whether arising from weak, short-term classroom friendships or from close, long-term friendships-exhibit various levels of network clustering, segregation, and hierarchy. Some are rank-ordered caste systems and others are flat, cliquish worlds. Explaining the source of such structural variation remains a challenge, however, because global network features are generally treated as the agglomeration of micro-level tie-formation mechanisms, namely balance, homophily, and dominance. How do the same micro-mechanisms generate significant variation in global network structures? To answer this question we propose and test a network ecological theory that specifies the ways features of organizational environments moderate the expression of tie-formation processes, thereby generating variability in global network structures across settings...
December 1, 2014: American Sociological Review
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