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Marital Satisfaction in Black Marriages: Why Are Black Wives Less Happy? by Aresty Posters 2009

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Taken by
Aresty Posters 2009 Aresty Posters 2009
Explore score
0.06 Gigapixels
Date added
May 29, 2009
Date taken
May 28, 2009

Author: Jennifer N. Vergeon

Clear racial differences in marital satisfaction exist between Whites and Blacks. Whites express greater happiness in marriage than Blacks. There are also gender disparities: White and Black men report being happier with their marriages than their spouses. Research has also suggested that in terms of marital satisfaction, there are intra-racial differences among Blacks. The goal of my research is to ascertain why there are marital happiness differences within Blacks. I hypothesize that differences in marital happiness levels between Black husbands and wives are greater than the differences between Whites. I propose that the relative socioeconomic status of husbands and wives accounts for the differences in happiness levels between Black men and women. Compared to Black men, Black women are unhappier in their marriages because of the typically lower educational levels of their husbands. I test this prediction using mixed methods, which includes secondary analysis of the General Social Survey, a focus group with married Black women, and interviews with married Black men. I find that relative education helps explain Black women’s lower levels of marital happiness.

Advisors: Dr. Ellen Idler & Dr. Sarah Rosenfield

Contact Information:
Email: jvergeon@yahoo.com

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