Shifting family definitions: The effect of cohabitation and other nonfamily household relationships on measures of poverty
- Kurt J. Bauman
- … show all 1 hide
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
The current official poverty measure compares income to needs within a family. Some have suggested including cohabiting couples as part of this family. Others have suggested that the household be used as the unit of analysis for poverty measurement. I explore issues involved in expanding the unit of analysis, including the stability of cohabiting and other non family household relationships and the degree of resource sharing that takes place among different types of people within households. Instability in households with non family members is not a serious problem for inferring poverty from cross-sectional studies. On the other hand, income from people in non family household roles contributes slightly less to helping other household members avoid financial hardship, implying that non family housemates have a greater tendency to keep income to themselves.
- Bennett, N.G., A.K. Blanc, and D.E. Bloom. 1988, “Commitment and the Modem Union: Assessing the Link Between Premarital Cohabitation and Subsequent Marital Stability.” American Sociological Review 53:127–38. CrossRef
- Betson, D.M. 1990. Alternative Estimates of the Cost of Children From the 1980-86 Consumer Expenditure Survey. Report to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Washington, DC.
- Bumpass, L.L., R.K. Raley, and I.A. Sweet. 1995. “The Changing Character of Stepfamilies: Implications of Cohabitation and Nonmarital Childbearing.“ Demography 32:425–36. CrossRef
- Bumpass, L.L. and J.A. Sweet. 1989. “National Estimates of Cohabitation.” Demography 26:615–25. CrossRef
- Citro, C. and R. Michael. 1995. Measuring Poverty. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
- Edin, K. and L. Lein. 1997. Making Ends Meet: How Single Mothers Survive Welfare and Low-Wage Work. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
- Fisher, G.M. 1992. “Poverty Guidelines for 1992.” Social Security Bulletin 55(1):43–46.
- Fisher, G.M. 1996. “Disseminating the Administrative Version of the Federal Poverty Measure in the 1990s.” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Sociological Practice Association, Arlington, VA.
- Innes, J.E. 1990. Knowledge and Public Policy: The Search for Meaningful Indicators. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction.
- Lazear, E.P. and R.T. Michael. 1988. Allocation of Income Within the Household. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
- Levy, F. 1987. Dollars and Dreams: The Changing American Income Distribution. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
- Loomis, L.S. and N.S. Landale. 1994. “Nonmarital Cohabitation and Childbearing Among Black and White American Women.” Journal of Marriage and the Family 56:949–62. CrossRef
- Manning, W. 1995. “Comparisons of Direct and Inferred Measures of Cohabitation.” Unpublished manuscript, Population Research Institute, Pennsylvania State University.
- Manning, W. and D.T. Lichter. 1996. “Parental Cohabitation and Children’s Economic Well-being.” Journal of Marriage and the Family 58:998–1010, CrossRef
- Mayer, S.E. and C. Jencks. 1989. “Poverty and the Distribution of Material Hardship,” Journal of Human Resources 24(1):88–114. CrossRef
- McLanahan, S.S. and L.E. Casper, 1995. “Growing Diversity and Inequality in the American Family.” Pp. 1–45 in State of the Union: America in the 1990s, Vol. 2, edited by R. Farley. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
- McLanahan, S.S. and G. Sandefur. 1994. Growing up With a Single Parent: What Hurts, What Helps. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
- Rindfuss, R.R. and A. Vanden Heuvel. 1990. “Cohabitation: A Precursor to Marriage or an Alternative to Being Single?” Population and Development Review 16:703–26. CrossRef
- Saluter, A.F. 1994. Marital Status and Living Arrangements: March 1993. Current Population Reports, Household Economic Studies, P70-42. Washington, DC: U.S. Bureau of the Census.
- Shelton, B.A. and D. John. 1993. “Does Marital Status Make a Difference: Housework Among Married and Cohabiting Men and Women,” Journal of Family Issues 14:401–20. CrossRef
- Short, K. and M. Shea. 1995. Beyond Poverty: Extended Measures of Well-being. Current Population Reports, Household Economic Studies, P70-50RV Washington, DC: U.S. Bureau of the Census.
- South, S.J. and G. Spitze. 1994. “Housework in Marital and NonMarital Households.” American Sociological Review 59:327–47. CrossRef
- Unicon Research Corporation. 1998. Current Population Surveys, March 1962–1998. Santa Monica: Unicon.
- Wiersma, G.E. 1983. Cohabitation, an Alternative to Marriage? A Cross-National Study. Boston: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers.
- Wilson, W.J. 1987, The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass and Public Policy. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
- Shifting family definitions: The effect of cohabitation and other nonfamily household relationships on measures of poverty
Volume 36, Issue 3 , pp 315-325
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Additional Links
- Industry Sectors
- Kurt J. Bauman (1)
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Population Division, U.S. Bureau of the Census, 20233-8800, Washington, DC