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Union Formation in a Multicultural Context

  • Christelle Hamel
  • Bertrand Lhommeau
  • Ariane PailhéEmail author
  • Emmanuelle Santelli
Chapter
Part of the INED Population Studies book series (INPS, volume 8)

Abstract

How does national origin influence the choice of partner? This chapter examines union formation in relation to migration history. As one might expect, it reveals very low proportions of mixed unions among migrant groups where individuals had already formed a family before migrating (persons of Turkish origin, for example), but high proportions among individuals who arrived in France as young singles (migrants from Spain and Italy). These conditions of arrival strongly influence the way in which migrants' descendants born in France choose their partner: unions are less frequently formed with someone from the mainstream population if the parents' generation already had a family when they arrived in France, as ties with the country and community of origin remain stronger in such cases. However, the models of union formation are changing radically, with direct marriage giving way to cohabitation, and with partners being chosen from among friends or colleagues rather than through the parents' social network. Beyond national origin, social and religious homogamy remain the most structuring components of partner choice, and mixed unions predominantly concern highly educated individuals with no religious affiliation.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christelle Hamel
    • 1
  • Bertrand Lhommeau
    • 2
  • Ariane Pailhé
    • 1
    Email author
  • Emmanuelle Santelli
    • 3
  1. 1.Institut national d’études démographiques (INED)ParisFrance
  2. 2.Direction de l’animation de la recherche, des études et des statistiques (DARES)ParisFrance
  3. 3.CNRS, Centre Max-Weber (CMW)LyonFrance

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