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National Research Council (US) Panel on Hispanics in the United States; Tienda M, Mitchell F, editors. Hispanics and also the Future of America. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2006.


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National Research Council (US) Panel on Hispanics in the United States; Tienda M, Mitchell F, editors.


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5Hispanic Families in the United States: Family Structure and also Process in an Era of Family Change

Nancy S. Landale, R. Salvador Oropesa, and also Christina Bradatan.


The last decades of the 20th century were a period of substantial change in household life in the United States. Among the well-documented changes are a climbing age at marital relationship, a rise in cohabitation, and a dramatic transition in the propercentage of youngsters born external marriage (Bramlett and also Mosher, 2002; Casper and Bianchi, 2002; Wu and also Wolfe, 2001). Coupled with a high divorce price, these fads have actually caused high rates of female family headship and also a growing share of kids via restricted accessibility to their fathers" sources.

These alters in family patterns have actually taken place alongside quick development in immigration and also concomitant transforms in the racial and also ethnic complace of the UNITED STATE populace. The average annual inflow of immigrants more than doubled in between the 1970s and also 1990s, and the share of immigrants from Latin America raised at the exact same time (Martin and Midgley, 2003). Therefore, the Hispanic populace thrived from 5 percent of the total U.S. population in 1970 to 13 percent in 2000. Additionally, population projections imply that Hispanics will certainly consist of 20 percent of the UNITED STATE populace in 2030 (National Research Council, 1997).

This chapter addresses the interarea of these 2 domain names of promptly transforming demographic habits. Specifically, we analyze the household fads of Hispanics, focusing on a number of crucial worries. First, to location the present in a bigger conmessage, we document trends in several indicators of family members change. Comparisons in between Hispanic subteams, non-Hispanic whites, and non-Hispanic blacks provide information on the level to which Hispanics have common in the basic shifts in family configurations that took location throughout the previous several decades. This concern is basic to understanding the nature of family members life among Hispanics as well as links between changing family procedures and also family members members" accessibility to social and also economic sources. As detailed by Vega (1995, p. 6), “Changing household structures, consisting of marital disruption and cohabitation, might reexisting the a lot of vital worry for Latino family theory and research in the decade ahead.”

A second worry addressed in the chapter is generational variation in family members trends within Hispanic subteams. Our descriptive analyses demonstrate that Hispanics—choose various other racial/ethnic groups—exhibit many kind of behaviors that are constant via what some scholars contact “family decline” (Popenoe, 1993). At the exact same time, Hispanics (specifically Mexican Americans) are commonly explained as oriented toward household wellness, fairly than individual health (Sabogal, Marin, Otero-Sabogal, VanOss Marin, and also Perez-Stable, 1987; Valenzuela and also Dornbusch, 1994; Vega, 1995). To the extent that such “familism” stays alive among UNITED STATE Hispanics, one would suppose it to reduce the erosion of traditional family patterns or to contribute to new household develops in which family support continues to be high. However, it is possible that the procedure of assimilation reduces familism and motivates the individualism that some have actually said is at the heart of current changes in household behavior. After describing racial/ethnic distinctions in the features of family members family members and the living arrangements of people of assorted eras, we focus on distinctions within Hispanic groups by generational status. Our comparisons of the family members patterns of the initially generation (foreign-born), the second generation (native-born of foreign parentage), and the third or higher generations (native-born of aboriginal parentage) will certainly melted light on the dynamics of assimilation via respect to family fads.

A third topic considered in the chapter is racial/ethnic mixing in sex-related partnerships of assorted types, consisting of marital relationship, cohabitation, and also parenthood. Intermarriage is a long-standing layout in the research of assimilation. It has actually been considered both an indicator of assimilation and also a method whereby adaptation is accomplished (Gordon, 1964; Lieberkid and also Waters, 1988). According to the classic assimilation concept, intermarital relationship in between an immiapprove team and the dominant population reduces social boundaries and ultimately leads to a reduction in the salience of an ethnic identification. Because the offspring of intermarried couples may opt out of defining themselves as members of an ethnic group, intermarital relationship may influence the future dimension and also shape of an ethnic populace. Among Hispanics, intermarriage via non-Hispanic whites or non-Hispanic blacks may ultimately result in a blurring of racial/ethnic boundaries. At the same time, intermarriage in between members of various Hispanic subgroups might strengthen pan-ethnicity, or the fostering of a “Hispanic” identification instead of an identification as a member of a specific national-origin group. While recognizing the importance of intermarriage, we compete that in the present era of what is dubbed the “retreat from marriage,” the examine of racial/ethnic mixing in sex-related partnerships should be broadened to include unions various other than conventional marrieras. Thus, we study ethnic endogamy and also exogamy among Hispanics in both marriage and also cohabitation. Given the prospering separation of marriage and also childbearing, we likewise research racial/ethnic mixing in both marital and also nonmarital childbearing.

It is currently extensively recognized that Hispanic national-origin groups differ markedly via respect to their histories of immigration, negotiation fads, sociofinancial position, and also other scenarios (Bean and Tienda, 1987; Oropesa and also Landale, 1997; Portes and also Rumbaut, 2001). Tbelow is a general agreement among specialists on the Hispanic populace that, to the degree possible, research study need to disaggregate the generic category “Hispanic” into certain national-origin teams. Thus, every one of our analyses present information individually for Mexicans, Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Central/South Americans, and various other Hispanics.1 In enhancement to addressing distinctions in between Hispanics and also non-Hispanics, we research the diversity of family patterns among the certain Hispanic teams.

Several broad conclusions are supported by our analyses. First, Hispanics exhilittle high levels of familism loved one to non-Hispanics on a range of structural/demographic indications. However before, they are likewise participating in the general changes in household life that are under method in the USA. 2nd, analyses conducted independently by nationwide origin indicate decreasing familism across generations (via some exceptions). Third, all Hispanic subgroups exhilittle extensive declines in ethnic endogamy across generations. This pattern says that adaptation is occurring and that racial/ethnic boundaries for Hispanics are not sharp. Nonethemuch less, the Mexican-origin population stands out for its high levels of ethnic endogamy in marital relationship, cohabitation, and parenthood.