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Migration and Father Absence: Shifting Family Structure in Mexico

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  • Jenna Nobles

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    Abstract

    Despite many changing demographic processes in Mexico—declining adult mortality, rising divorce, and rising nonmarital fertility—Mexican children’s family structure has been most affected by rising migration rates. Data from five national surveys spanning three decades demonstrate that since 1976, migration has shifted from the least common to the most common form of father household absence. Presently, more than 1 in 5 children experience a father’s migration by age 15; 1 in 11 experiences his departure to the United States. The proportions are significantly higher among those children born in rural communities and those born to less-educated mothers. The findings emphasize the importance of framing migration as a family process with implications for children’s living arrangements and attendant well-being, particularly in resource-constrained countries. The stability of children’s family life in these regions constitutes a substantial but poorly measured cost of worldwide increases in migration. Copyright Population Association of America 2013

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s13524-012-0187-8
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Springer in its journal Demography.

    Volume (Year): 50 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 4 (August)
    Pages: 1303-1314

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    Handle: RePEc:spr:demogr:v:50:y:2013:i:4:p:1303-1314

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    Web page: http://www.springer.com/economics/journal/13524

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    Related research

    Keywords: Migration; Children’s living arrangements; Mexican families;

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    1. Kenneth Hill & Rebeca Wong, 2005. "Mexico-US Migration: Views from Both Sides of the Border," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 31(1), pages 1-18.
    2. David J. McKenzie & Nicole Hildebrandt, 2005. "The Effects of Migration on Child Health in Mexico," JOURNAL OF LACEA ECONOMIA, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION.
    3. Cynthia Feliciano, 2005. "Educational selectivity in U.S. Immigration: How do immigrants compare to those left behind?," Demography, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 131-152, February.
    4. Gordon H Hanson & Craig McIntosh, 2010. "The Great Mexican Emigration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(4), pages 798-810, November.
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    7. David McKenzie & Hillel Rapoport, 2007. "Self-selection patterns in Mexico-U.S. migration: The role of migration networks," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0701, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    8. Kerry Richter, 1988. "Union patterns and children’s living arrangements in Latin America," Demography, Springer, vol. 25(4), pages 553-566, November.
    9. Andrew Halpern-Manners, 2011. "The Effect of Family Member Migration on Education and Work Among Nonmigrant Youth in Mexico," Demography, Springer, vol. 48(1), pages 73-99, February.
    10. Undp, 2009. "HDR 2009 - Overcoming barriers: Human mobility and development," Human Development Report (1990 to present), Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), number hdr2009, June.
    11. Patrick Heuveline & Jeffrey M. Timberlake & Frank F. Furstenberg, 2003. "Shifting Childrearing to Single Mothers: Results from 17 Western Countries," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 29(1), pages 47-71.
    12. Woodruff, Christopher & Zenteno, Rene, 2007. "Migration networks and microenterprises in Mexico," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 509-528, March.
    13. Marcela Cerrutti & Douglas Massey, 2001. "On the auspices of female migration from Mexico to the United States," Demography, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 187-200, May.
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