The main ‘theoretical’ justification1 for using husband’s social class as an index for their unfortunate spouses therefore rests on the empirical claim that marriages are on the whole homogamous by social class. The difficulty with testing that claim — suspending, for the purposes of this chapter, our doubts about what the SCS is actually an index of — is that some independent indicator of a woman’s social class is obviously essential to that argument: that is, even assuming that we know that the husband’s social class reflects his social position, we have to find a similar index for the woman in order to test the claim that marriages are class homogamous. Of course, if we had such an index, the question of class homogamy would not arise in this context!
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