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Preference Changes Among American Youth: Family, Work, and Goods Aspirations, 1976-86

Eileen M. Crimmins, Richard A. Easterlin and Yasuhiko Saito
Population and Development Review
Vol. 17, No. 1 (Mar., 1991), pp. 115-133
Published by: Population Council
DOI: 10.2307/1972355
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1972355
Page Count: 19
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Preference Changes Among American Youth: Family, Work, and Goods Aspirations, 1976-86
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Abstract

This article examines trends and differentials by sex in both absolute and relative preferences among American young adults from 1976 to 1986. If one considers marriage and family formation preferences alone, the desires of American youth to marry and have children changed very little over this period. When one shifts from absolute to relative preferences, desires for goods for oneself have increased substantially, and for leisure and goods for one's children moderately. Considered in this context, the stability in marriage and family preferences implies a shift in relative preferences against children.

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