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Opposites Attract: Assortative Mating and Immigrant–Native Intermarriage in Modern Sweden


Opposites Attract: Assortative Mating and Immigrant–Native Intermarriage in Modern Sweden

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This paper studies just just how immigrant–native intermarriages in Sweden are connected with specific traits of indigenous people and habits of assortative mating. Habits of educational- and age-assortative mating being just like the ones that are in native–native marriages may mirror openness to immigrant teams, whereas assortative mating habits that suggest status factors claim that nation of delivery continues to act as a boundary into the marriage market that is native. The research utilizes Swedish register information that cover the whole Swedish populace when it comes to amount of 1991–2009. The outcome from binomial and multinomial logistic regressions show that low status of natives when it comes to financial and demographic faculties is related to intermarriage and therefore intermarriages are seen as an academic and age heterogamy more than are native–native marriages. The findings suggest that immigrant ladies along with immigrant guys be a little more appealing marriage partners if they’re quite a bit more youthful than their indigenous spouses. This is certainly specially true for intermarriages with immigrants from particular elements of beginning, such as for instance spouses from Asia and Africa and husbands from Asia, Africa, and also the center East. Gender variations in the intermarriage habits of indigenous women and men are interestingly little.


A distinct function of numerous wedding areas is homogamy in spousal option. Lovers are generally similar pertaining to status that is socioeconomicKalmijn 1991), age (van Poppel et al. 2001), education, battle, and religion (Blackwell and Lichter 2004). While there is similarity that is increasing particular traits such as for example training and age over a few years (Schwartz and Mare 2005; Van de Putte et al. 2009), there clearly was a decrease in homogamy when it comes to nation of delivery throughout the increase of intermarriages between natives and immigrants in European countries. Footnote 1 Scholars usually learn immigrant–native intermarriage within the context of immigrant integration and regularly consider intermarriage once the step that is final the assimilation procedure (Gordon 1964). an extremely neglected element of this will be that “it takes two to tango”: it needs the maximum amount of willingness regarding the section of natives to intermarry because it does in the section of immigrants. This research addresses an interest which has hitherto been understudied for the reason that it analyses the (inter-)marriage behavior of indigenous Swedes. Footnote 2 centering on the indigenous bulk expands the intermarriage literary works and results in a far better knowledge of societal openness towards minorities when you look at the majority’s marriage market. The characteristics of both the native partner and the immigrant partner, this paper is an important contribution to the intermarriage literature by taking into account. Intermarriage is normally considered to signal the reality that various social teams consider each other as equals (cf. Kalmijn 1991), but marriage may also replicate hierarchies that are social excluding specific groups through the pool of possible lovers and reproducing social structures within these. Where intermarriages display systematic habits of hypergamy and hypogamy, that is, native lovers marry up or down in faculties such as for instance age and training, it may be determined that the lovers usually do not consider one another as social equals (Merton 1941). Intermarriage habits consequently have actually the possible to show implicit hierarchies of immigrants within the wedding market. Footnote 3

The specific question that this paper tries to response is whether intermarriages are linked to the status of native Swedes in adition to that of immigrants when you look at the marriage market that is swedish. By analysing the patient faculties of natives which can be connected with intermarriage plus the educational- and age-assortative mating patterns of intermarried partners as opposed to the simple regularity of these unions, this research plays a role in a formerly understudied area when you look at the intermarriage literary works. It makes use of register that is high-quality within the whole populace of residents in Sweden and includes all marriages and non-marital unions with common young ones that have been created in the time 1991–2009.

Background and past Research on Immigrant–Native Intermarriages in find links European countries and Sweden

Intermarriage between immigrants and natives has grown generally in most countries in europe in previous decades and it is closely associated with the percentage of immigrants in the united kingdom (Lanzieri 2012). This basic escalation in intermarriage in European countries is essentially linked to an amazing escalation in intermarriage with partners from nations outside of the EU (de Valk and Medrano 2014). Intermarriage prices in Sweden continuously have risen since the 1970s, as well as the enhance is notably steeper for males compared to females. Figure 1 shows the proportions of immigrant–native intermarriages (defined right right here as marriages from a indigenous swede footnote 4 and their foreign-born partner) and native–native marriages (thought as marriages between two indigenous partners) of most newly contracted marriages created by indigenous Swedes from 1969 to 2009. As of 1991 the register extracts found in this paper have an identifier for non-marital cohabitations with typical kiddies, that makes it feasible to report the stocks of native–native cohabitation and immigrant–native cohabitation.

Stocks of native–native unions and immigrant–native unions of all of the unions of indigenous Swedish guys and ladies in Sweden 1969–2009

The shares of immigrant–native marriage and cohabitation are close in size and have changed only marginally since the 1990s; for native men, there is a wider gap with immigrant–native cohabitation displaying lower rates with little increase over time and immigrant–native marriages displaying higher rates with a more pronounced increase over time for native women.

In previous years, intermarriage between indigenous Swedes and immigrants had been dominated by intermarriage along with other citizens that are nordic especially Finns (Cretser 1999). The increase in intermarriages can be largely accounted for by the increased number of marriages with partners from outside Europe, and Thailand has replaced Finland as the most frequent country of origin for intermarried immigrant women (although Finland remains the most common country of origin for intermarried immigrant men; Haandrikman 2014) in more recent years.