This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 13th (it will be out in January 2020), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

You can download an iPhone app for the 13th edition from the App Store (search for Weeks Population).

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Thursday, October 7, 2010

More on the Postponement of Marriage in the US

A few days ago I commented on new data from the 2009 American Community Survey (ACS) showing that Americans were postponing marriage, almost certainly in response to bad economic times. Today the Pew Research Center released a report based on data from the 2008 ACS, and earlier decennial census data, that provide a twist on the postponement story--people without a college degree have been delaying marriage more than the college-educated. The upshot of this is that among 30-year-olds in 2008, the percentage of college-educated people who were married or had been married was slightly higher (62 percent) than among those without a college degree (60 percent). This is a brand new phenomenon. Note, however, that this does not mean that the people without a degree are not forming families, but they are more likely to be doing it through informal means. It used to be that cohabitation was derisively called the "poor man's marriage." Over the past few decades the rapid rise in cohabitation at nearly all adult ages seemed to put the lie to that idea, but this new Pew analysis might resurrect that notion.

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