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Journal Article

The Employment of Wives in Middle-Class Black Families

Bart Landry and Margaret Platt Jendrek
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 40, No. 4, Black Families (Nov., 1978), pp. 787-797
DOI: 10.2307/351199
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/351199
Page Count: 11
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The Employment of Wives in Middle-Class Black Families
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Abstract

Prior studies of the employment of black and white wives have compared rates and patterns among all black and all white wives. The present study focuses primarily upon wives in black middle-class families, with comparisons made to wives in middle-class white and working-class black families. A model with 11 independent variables is presented, and multiple regression analysis used to predict the probability that a wife will be employed. Findings support the hypothesis of both race and class effects upon the employment of wives. Black middle-class wives were found to have higher employment rates than both white middle- and black working-class wives. At the same time, patterns of influence among factors affecting employment differed between black and white middle-class wives, as well as between black middle- and working-class wives. Results of the regression analysis and contingency analysis of relevant data suggest that black middle-class wives have higher employment rates because of economic need.

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