Furstenberg, Frank F

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Now showing 1 - 10 of 46
  • Publication
    A Sequence-Analysis Approach to the Study of the Transition to Adulthood in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
    (2020-06-09) Sironi, Maria; Barban, Nicola; Pesando, Luca Maria; Furstenberg, Frank F.
    This study investigates whether young people in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) have experienced processes of de-standardization of the life course similar to those observed in high-income societies. We provide two contributions to the relevant literature. First, we use data from 263 Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) across 69 LMICs, offering the richest comparative account of women’s transition to adulthood (TTA) patterns in the developing world existing to date. In so doing, we shift the focus from individual life-course transitions towards a holistic approach that allows us to characterize the life-course complexity by detailed sequences of events, namely first sexual intercourse, first union, and first birth. Second, using a clustering algorithm based on optimal-matching distances of lifecourse sequences, we identify clusters of TTA and explore their changes across cohorts by region and urban/rural location of residence. Results stress the importance of investigating cross-regional differences in partnership and fertility trajectories by looking at the interrelation and complexity of status combinations. Summarizing the ensuing heterogeneity through four clusters, we document significant differences by macro-regions yet relative stability across cohorts. We interpret the latter as suggestive of cultural specificities that make the TTA resistant to change and slow to converge across regions, if converging at all.
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    Daddies and Fathers: Men Who Do for Their Children and Men Who Don't
    (1992) Furstenberg, Frank F
    This investigation builds on a longstanding interest in the patterns of family formation of young parents, particularly on a 20-year longitudinal study of teenage mothers and their children in Baltimore and a national survey of families, which followed children from early childhood to young adulthood.1 In both studies, how fathers establish and maintain bonds with their children was a central concern. This background of quantitative research grounds the insights and observations provided here from a select and not necessarily representative set of case studies of young black women and some of their male partners; these women and men all participated in a continuing follow-up study of families in the Baltimore research.2
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    What Happened When the Census was Redone: An Analysis of the Recount of 1870 in Philadelphia
    (1979) Furstenberg, Frank F; Strong, Douglas; Crawford, Albert G
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  • Publication
    Cause for Alarm? Understanding Recent Trends in Teenage Childbearing
    (2008-01-01) Furstenberg, Frank F
    Teen pregnancy is back in the news. After 15 years of decline, the trend in teen birth rates ticked upward in 2006. Coupled with the ongoing media spotlight on the popular film Juno and the pregnancy of Britney Spears’ younger sister, we’re once again wringing our collective hands over kids having kids. But are these concerns really warranted? To what extent does teen pregnancy lead to mothers’ and children’s long-term poverty? Have policies adopted to deter early childbearing been effective in discouraging teens from having children before they are ready to shoulder the responsibilities of parenthood? To answer these questions, it’s necessary to put the issue in proper historical context, and to cast a sober eye on existing policies that were employed to keep rates of teenage childbearing low.
  • Publication
    Family Change and Variation Through the Lens of Family Configurations in Low- and Middle-Income Countries
    (2021-09-27) Castro Torres, Andrés Felipe; Pesando, Luca Maria; Kohler, Hans-Peter; Furstenberg, Frank F.
    Using 254 Demographic and Health Surveys from 75 low- and middle-income countries, this study shows how the joint examination of family characteristics across rural and urban areas provides new insights for understanding global family change. We operationalize this approach by building family configurations: a set of interrelated features that describe different patterns of family formation and structure. These features include partnership (marriage/unions) regimes and their stability, gender relations, household composition, and reproduction. Factorial and clustering techniques allow us to summarize these family features into three factorial axes and six discrete family configurations. We provide an in-depth description of these configurations, their spatial distribution, and their changes over time. Global family change is uneven because it emerges from complex interplays between the relative steadiness of longstanding arrangements for forming families and organizing gender relations, and the rapidly changing dynamics observed in the realms of fertility, contraception, and timing of family formation.
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    Will Marriage Disappear?
    (2015-09-01) Furstenberg, Frank F
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    The Family in the City
    (1999-12-31) Furstenberg, Frank F
    Almost by definition the concentration of poverty is associated with the concentration of family problems and less well functioning communities. Researchers have had no problem documenting that crime, drug abuse, mental health problems, and school failure are all disproportionately located in the poorer communities in the United States, especially in very poor neighborhoods. However, for the author, that correlation of low income communities and problem behavior or low achievement among children does not necessarily demonstrate that families and children behave differently because they grow up in low income communities.
  • Publication
    The Disappearing American Father? Divorce and the Waning Significance of Biological Parenthood
    (1992) Furstenberg, Frank F; Harris, Kathleen M
    The place of fathers in the family has long been viewed by social scientists as potentially precarious. From the time of Malinowski's writings, family theorists have recognized the comparatively weak link between biological fathers and their children—at least in contrast to the more obvious maternal bond created by pregnancy and childbearing (Malinowski 1930; Davis 1939, 1949; Goode 1960). Malinowski was among the first to observe that marriage is a cultural invention that establishes men's paternal rights and responsibilities. The near universality of marriage and its effectiveness in licensing parenthood have been taken as evidence that culture could regulate behavior no less successfully than biology.
  • Publication
    Diverging Development: The Not-So-Invisible Hand of Social Class in the United States
    (2010-01-01) Furstenberg, Frank F
    The advantages and disadvantages associated with social class position build up over time, creating huge developmental differences in the course of growing up. This chapter discusses how development is shaped by social class position and, how the processes associated with class position are either mitigated or amplified over the early part of the life course. By early adulthood, gaping disparities exist between children growing up in disadvantaged and advantaged families. I discuss how these trajectories pose special problems for less advantaged youth making the transition to adulthood due to the need for resources to pay for higher education.