The marriage squeeze: A comparison between African American and European American educated women

Sana Siddeeqah Nasir, Tennessee State University

Abstract

This research explored the “marriage squeeze” phenomenon among college educated African American (AA) and European American (EA) females. Specifically, this study sought to provide a better understanding of some of the underlying reasons why African American educated women are marrying at significantly lower rates than European American educated women. Another aim of this study was to discover what factors are most important in mate selection for African American and European American females. There is a lack of empirical evidence to support notions of why college educated African American women are marrying at significantly lower rates than their European American counterpart. It was hypothesized that African American women deem religious background, parental beliefs, race, socioeconomic status, education level and physical attractiveness as more important when choosing a mate than European American women. Additionally, it was hypothesized that African American women are less likely to attend mixed race social activities, to be attracted to persons of other race, to date persons outside of their race, to consider marriage to persons of other race, and less likely to marry outside their race when compared to their European American women counterparts. The final hypothesis sought to determine if there were racial differences in attractiveness of perceived social status (occupation and income level). ^ It was found that African American women did not consider religious background, parental beliefs, race, or education level as more important to their mate selection than did their female European American counterparts. As such these hypotheses were not supported in this study. It was also found that African American women deemed socioeconomic status and physical attractiveness as more important in their mate selection than did European American women; these hypotheses were supported. Additionally, African American women were significantly less likely than European American women to date a person of a different race. Similarly, African American women were also less likely to consider marrying a person of a different race and also less likely to report having ever been married to someone of another race when compared to European American women. Among the African American women who reported ever being married, none indicated that they were ever married to someone of a different race compared to European American women who were ever married. Implications for further research include examining factors why African American women are less likely than European American women to date and marry outside their race. ^

Subject Area

Psychology, Behavioral|Psychology, Social

Recommended Citation

Sana Siddeeqah Nasir, "The marriage squeeze: A comparison between African American and European American educated women" (2010). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI1484273.
http://digitalscholarship.tnstate.edu/dissertations/AAI1484273

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