Expecting the unexpected: Young people's expectations about marriage and family

Skrbis, Zlatko, Western, Mark, Tranter, Bruce, Hogan, David, Coates, Rebecca, Smith, Jonathan, Hewitt, Belinda and Mayall, Margery (2012) Expecting the unexpected: Young people's expectations about marriage and family. Journal of Sociology, 48 1: 63-83. doi:10.1177/1440783311408968

Author Skrbis, Zlatko
Western, Mark
Tranter, Bruce
Hogan, David
Coates, Rebecca
Smith, Jonathan
Hewitt, Belinda
Mayall, Margery
Title Expecting the unexpected: Young people's expectations about marriage and family
Journal name Journal of Sociology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1440-7833
Publication date 2012-03
Year available 2011
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/1440783311408968
Volume 48
Issue 1
Start page 63
End page 83
Total pages 21
Place of publication London, U.K.
Publisher Sage Publications
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Many social theorists argue that institutions such as organized religion, the nuclear family and social traditions more generally, are in a rapid and potentially terminal decline. At the same time, there has been a growing emphasis on the processes of individualization, the rise of the ‘reflexive self’, de-traditionalization and an emergent view of life as a ‘planning project’ where individuals determine their future pathways through autonomous decision-making. Some authors, such as Giddens and Beck and Beck-Gernsheim argue that personal life, families and relationships are particularly affected by these changes, while others, such as Gross and Simmons or Smart and Shipman, advise more caution. In this article we interrogate this tension by using first-wave data from a longitudinal study involving over 7000 12–13-year-old high-school students from government, independent and Catholic schools in Queensland, Australia. In this article we provide key baseline findings on students’ expectations of marriage and family life to highlight several key issues that must be addressed by de-institutionalization and reflexivity theorists, and which illustrate the need for a more longitudinal evaluation of their claims.
Keyword De-institutionalization
Life course
Longitudinal study
Young people
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Published online first 3 August 2011

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Institute for Social Science Research - Publications
Official 2012 Collection
School of Social Science Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 2 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 5 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 05 Sep 2011, 14:43:15 EST by Debbie Lim on behalf of School of Social Science