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The Family Life Course of Puerto Rican Children

Nancy S. Landale and Susan M. Hauan
Journal of Marriage and Family
Vol. 54, No. 4 (Nov., 1992), pp. 912-924
DOI: 10.2307/353172
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/353172
Page Count: 13
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The Family Life Course of Puerto Rican Children
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Abstract

Recent studies document a high and rising rate of female family headship among mainland Puerto Ricans. Using data from a survey of Puerto Rican women residing in the New York City area in 1985, this paper examines the implications of changing marital behavior for Puerto Rican children's family life course. The analysis shows that: (a) a growing proportion of Puerto Rican children are born outside of formal or informal coresidential unions; (b) among children born into intact unions, an increasing proportion are the offspring of informal unions; (c) Puerto Rican children face high and rising risks of experiencing family disruption during childhood; and (d) among those who enter single-parent families, the duration of time with a single mother is rarely brief. Given the high poverty rate of female-headed families, our findings imply that Puerto Rican children face rising risks of experiencing sustained poverty during childhood.

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