Integration and Out-Partnering: Attitudes and Behavior of Young Adults in Sweden

Calvin Goldscheider, Brown University
Eva Bernhardt, Stockholm University

The extent of inter-ethnic partnering shapes the distinctiveness of ethnic communities and has been viewed as the quintessential indicator of assimilation, just as intra-ethnic partnering has been considered an important basis of ethnic group continuity. We use 1999 and 2003 survey data on native-born young adults in Sweden of Swedish, Polish and Turkish origins to investigate their ethnic out-partnering attitudes and behavior. We consider the impact of education, the structure of their families when they were growing up, a composite attitudinal measure of the intensity of ethnic identity, and the inter-ethnic partnering of their parents. Our overall hypothesis is: The more personal the contacts between young adults of ethnic communities and those of Swedish origins, the higher the probability of inter-ethnic partnering and the more open and less restrictive inter-partnering attitudes. We examine patterns for both men and women and whether partnering is through marriage or through cohabitation.

Presented in Session 10: Intermarriage: Trends and Consequences I