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'Old Christmas cake' or independent women? Never married Chinese and Japanese American women

Susan J Ferguson, University of Massachusetts Amherst


The purpose of this dissertation was to examine nuptial patterns among Chinese and Japanese American women. Specifically, this study compared the prevalence of and reasons for differential rates of marriage and timing of first marriage among non-Latino white, Chinese and Japanese American women. Using 1980 PUMS census data, the marriage patterns of the three racial-ethnic groups are examined. Comparisons are also made between the native born and foreign born in each racial-ethnic group. Native born Asian American women are found to have higher rates of non-marriage than their foreign born counterparts or native white women. An accelerated time model also is utilized to estimate the net effects of birth cohort, education, English proficiency, and mixed ancestry on the waiting time to first marriage for each racial-ethnic group. As expected, education significantly increases the time to first marriage among the racial-ethnic groups of women. The final section of the dissertation compares the household and socioeconomic characteristics of the never and ever married respondents. Never married women are found to have higher educations, incomes, and occupational statuses than ever married women. Native Asian American women are more frequently employed than native white women, regardless of marital status.

Subject Area

Sociology|Minority & ethnic groups|Sociology|Families & family life|Personal relationships|Sociology

Recommended Citation

Ferguson, Susan J, "'Old Christmas cake' or independent women? Never married Chinese and Japanese American women" (1993). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI9408271.