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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - American Sociological Review
Title The independence of young adults and the rise of interracial and same-sex unions
Volume 70
Issue 4
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2005
Page numbers 541-562
URL http://web.stanford.edu/~mrosenfe/Rosenfeld+Kim 2005 final.pdf
Interracial unions and same sex unions were rare and secretive in the past because
U.S. society was organized to suppress such unions. The rise of same sex and interracial
unions in the past few decades suggests changes in the basic structure of U.S. society.
Young adults have been marrying later, and single young adults are much less likely to
live with their parents. The independence of young adults has reduced parental control
over their children's choice of mate. Using microdata from the U.S. census we show that
interracial couples and same sex couples are more geographically mobile and more urban
than same race married couples. We view the geographic mobility of young couples as a
proxy for their independence from communities of origin. We show that non-traditional
couples are more geographically mobile even after individual and community attributes
are taken into account. We find that same sex couples are more likely to be interracial
than heterosexual couples, indicating that same sex and interracial couples are part of a
common fabric of family diversification. We discuss related historical examples and

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