American Sociological Association

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  1. Childhood Disadvantage and Health Problems in Middle and Later Life: Early Imprints on Physical Health?

    Drawing from cumulative inequality theory, we examine the relationship between childhood disadvantage and health problems in adulthood. Using two waves of data from Midlife Development in the United States, we investigate whether childhood disadvantage is associated with adult disadvantage, including fewer social resources, and the effect of lifelong disadvantage on health problems measured at the baseline survey and a 10-year follow-up.

  2. "Both Sides of the Story": History Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa

    Scholars have documented the emergence of apparently race-neutral discourses that serve to entrench racial stratification following the elimination of de jure segregation. These discourses deny the existence of both present-day racism and the contemporary effects of histories of racial oppression. Researchers posit that individuals are socialized into these views, but little empirical attention has been paid to the processes through which such socialization occurs.

  3. Choice, Information, and Constrained Options: School Transfers in a Stratified Educational System

    It is well known that family socioeconomic background influences childhood access to opportunities. Educational reforms that introduce new information about school quality may lead to increased inequality if families with more resources are better able to respond. However, these policies can also level the playing field for choice by equalizing disadvantaged families’ access to information. This study assesses how a novel accountability system affected family enrollment decisions in the Chicago Public Schools by introducing new test performance information and consequences.

  4. The Paradox of Generosity: Giving We Receive, Grasping We Lose

    The Paradox of Generosity: Giving We Receive, Grasping We Lose

  5. Do Fathers Sexual Behaviors Vary with the Sex of Firstborns? Evidence from 37 Countries

    This article investigates whether men’s sexual behavior is influenced by the sex of their firstborn children and, if so, at what stage of firstborns’ development this occurs. Using standardized data from 37 Demographic and Health Surveys (N = 61,801), I compare the sexual activities, sexually transmitted infection symptoms, and sexual ideologies of fathers with firstborn sons and fathers with firstborn daughters. I also explore whether fathers’ attitudes mediate the effects of firstborn sex.

  6. First-birth Timing, Marital History, and Womens Health at Midlife

    Despite evidence that first-birth timing influences women’s health, the role of marital status in shaping this association has received scant attention. Using multivariate propensity score matching, we analyze data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 to estimate the effect of having a first birth in adolescence (prior to age 20), young adulthood (ages 20–24), or later ages (ages 25–35) on women’s midlife self-assessed health.

  7. Education, Health, and the Default American Lifestyle

    Education has a large and increasing impact on health in America. This paper examines one reason why. Education gives individuals the ability to override the default American lifestyle. The default lifestyle has three elements: displacing human energy with mechanical energy, displacing household food production with industrial food production, and displacing health maintenance with medical dependency. Too little physical activity and too much food produce imperceptibly accumulating pathologies.

  8. The Contribution of Smoking to Educational Gradients in U.S. Life Expectancy

    Researchers have documented widening educational gradients in mortality in the United States since the 1970s. While smoking has been proposed as a key explanation for this trend, no prior study has quantified the contribution of smoking to increasing education gaps in longevity.

  9. Educational Inequalities in Health Behaviors at Midlife: Is There a Role for Early-life Cognition?

    Education is a fundamental cause of social inequalities in health because it influences the distribution of resources, including money, knowledge, power, prestige, and beneficial social connections, that can be used in situ to influence health. Recent studies have highlighted early-life cognition as commonly indicating the propensity for educational attainment and determining health and age of mortality. Health behaviors provide a plausible mechanism linking both education and cognition to later-life health and mortality.

  10. Longitudinal Associations among Discordant Sexual Orientation Dimensions and Hazardous Drinking in a Cohort of Sexual Minority Women

    We examined differences between sexual minority women’s (SMW’s) sexual identity and sexual behavior or sexual attraction as potential contributors to hazardous drinking across a 10-year period. Data are from a longitudinal study examining drinking and drinking-related problems in a diverse, community-based sample of self-identified SMW (Wave 1: n = 447; Wave 2: n = 384; Wave 3: n = 354). Longitudinal cross-lagged models showed that SMW who report higher levels of identity-behavior or identity-attraction discordance may be at greater risk of concurrent and subsequent hazardous drinking.