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Title: Education, work and family events in women's lives : long-term developemnts and recent trends in East and West Germany
Author: Blossfeld, Gwendolin J.
ISNI:       0000 0004 6498 2816
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis investigates how educational expansion, the trend towards the service society and the German unification affect East and West German women's life courses and family lives. It focuses on educational enrolment, educational attainment level, labour force participation, career resources, social origin, the educational match among partners as well as historical periods and examines their consequences on women's entry into first motherhood as well as partnership formation and dissolution processes. Using longitudinal data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS), we have applied multivariate methods such as event history analysis. The findings suggest that women's entry into motherhood during full-time education is highly dependent on women's age, social origin and the policy measures in a country. Furthermore, women's education has mainly an effect on the time structure of entry into first motherhood over the life course of differently qualified women but not on their final decision to enter into motherhood. Only if higher educated women can turn their educational investments into career resources, there is an effect on childlessness. This thesis also looked into women's partnership formation and dissolution processes. East and West German women do only differ slightly with regard to these transitions; nevertheless, the results showed that it is mainly West German women that transform their partnerships if they experience a pregnancy. Furthermore, the transmission of norms within a family seems to play an important role in women's partnership formation and dissolution processes. Based on a new theoretical model on educational assortative mating and divorce, this thesis is able to show that there are not only benefits from division of work but also benefits from communication within married couples. The empirical results show that the combined gains and losses of division of work and communication are different for educationally married up, homogamous or down women. Women's upward marriages are the most stable ones, with homogamous marriages ranking second, followed by married down marriages being the least stable ones.
Supervisor: Mills, Colin Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Sociology ; Marriage