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Title: The role of religion in shaping women's family and employment patterns in Britian and France
Author: Peri-Rotem, Nitzan
ISNI:       0000 0004 6061 6114
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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The current study examines the influence of religious affiliation and practice on family patterns and labour market activity for women in Western Europe, focusing on Britain and France. While both countries have experienced a sharp decline in institutionalized forms of religion over the past decades, differences in family and fertility behaviour on the basis of religiosity seem to persist. Although previous studies documented a positive correlation between religion and both intended and actual family size, there is still uncertainty about the different routes through which religion affects fertility, how structural factors are involved in this relationship and whether and how this relationship has changed along with the process of religious decline. This study aims to fill this gap by exploring the interrelationships between religion, educational attainment, female labour force participation, union formation and fertility levels. The data come from the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS), which contains 18 waves from 1991 to 2008, and the French survey of the Generations and Gender Programme (GGP), which was initially conducted in 2005. By following trends in fertility differences by religious affiliation and practice across birth cohorts of women, it is found that religious differences in fertility are not only persistent across birth cohorts, there is also a growing divide between non-affiliated and religiously practicing women who maintain higher fertility levels. Religious differences in family formation patterns and completed fertility are also explored, taking into account the interaction between education and religiosity. It appears that the effect of education on fertility differs by level of religiosity, as higher education is less likely to lead to childlessness or to a smaller family size among more religious women. The findings on the relationships between family and work trajectories by level of religiosity also point to a reduced conflict between paid employment and childbearing among actively religious women, although these patterns vary by religious denomination and by country.
Supervisor: Sullivan, Oriel Sponsor: Clarendon Fund ; Nuffield College
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Families--Great Britain--Social conditions--21st century ; Families--France--Social conditions--21st century ; Women--Employment--Great Britain ; Women--Employment--France ; France--Religion ; Great Britain--Religion ; France--Social conditions--21st century ; Great Britain--Social conditions--21st century