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By Grossbard-Shechtman S.A., Mincer J. (eds.)

ISBN-10: 0521814545

ISBN-13: 9780521814546

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Similarly, couples who have reasons to believe their marriage is unstable (such as interfaith couples) limit their investments in spousespecific human capital, a behavior that raises the probability of a subsequent dissolution. Three paths through which government policies influence marital choices are examined by Leslie Whittington and James Alm in Chapter 4: cash transfers to the poor, income taxes, and divorce laws. It turns out that in the United States many public policies are some distance from a neutral treatment of marriage.

Production and other aspects of the economy can also influence the choice of marriage institutions. ” As recognized by the New Institutional Economics (see, for example, Douglass North 1981), institutions – including political and legal institutions – are changed by people with interests in these institutions. Societal norms regarding (gendered) marital roles at home and at work evolve from individual decisions regarding the use of time and income in the household and monetized economies. More and more people opt out of the traditional marriages that often forced women into supplying Work-in-Marriage.

The greater home responsibilities that married women often take upon themselves, creating more scope for combining the needs of the home and family with home-based work, may explain some of this marital differential. Field-Hendrey and Edwards also find that married women tend to have personal characteristics that are associated with high costs of working – small children, living in a rural area, living on a farm – and that these characteristics also correlate with the probability that they will choose to work at home.

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Marriage and the economy by Grossbard-Shechtman S.A., Mincer J. (eds.)


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