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ERIC Number: EJ916059
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Apr
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 68
ISSN: ISSN-0192-513X
Waiting to Be Asked: Gender, Power, and Relationship Progression among Cohabiting Couples
Sassler, Sharon; Miller, Amanda J.
Journal of Family Issues, v32 n4 p482-506 Apr 2011
The majority of young married Americans lived with their spouses before the wedding, and many cohabited with partners they did not wed. Yet little is known about how cohabitating relationships progress or the role gender norms play in this process. This article explores how cohabiting partners negotiate relationship progression, focusing on several stages where couples enact gender. Data are from in-depth interviews with 30 working-class couples (n = 60). The women in this sample often challenged conventional gender norms by suggesting that couples move in together or raising the issue of marriage. Men played dominant roles in initiating whether couples became romantically involved and progressed to a more formal status. Although women and men contest how gender is performed, cohabiting men remain privileged in the arena of relationship progression. The findings suggest that adherence to conventional gender practices even among those residing in informal unions perpetuates women's secondary position in intimate relationships. (Contains 6 notes and 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A