Opposites Attract: Assortative Mating and Immigrant–Native Intermarriage in Modern Sweden

Opposites Attract: Assortative Mating and Immigrant–Native Intermarriage in Modern Sweden


This paper studies just exactly exactly how immigrant–native intermarriages in Sweden are connected with individual faculties of indigenous people and habits of assortative mating. Habits of educational- and age-assortative mating which are comparable to those discovered in native–native marriages may reflect openness to immigrant teams, whereas assortative mating habits that indicate status factors claim that nation of delivery will continue to act as a boundary into the indigenous wedding market. The research utilizes Swedish register information that cover the whole Swedish populace for the amount of 1991–2009. The outcomes from binomial and multinomial logistic regressions show that low status of natives with regards to financial and demographic traits is connected with intermarriage and that intermarriages are seen as an academic and age heterogamy more than are native–native marriages. The findings suggest that immigrant females in addition to immigrant guys be much more appealing wedding partners if they’re dramatically more youthful than their indigenous partners. This can be specially real for intermarriages with immigrants from specific parts of beginning, such as for instance spouses from Asia and Africa and husbands from Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. Gender variations in the intermarriage habits of indigenous women and men are interestingly tiny.


A feature that is distinct of wedding areas is homogamy in spousal option. Lovers are usually comparable pertaining to status that is socioeconomicKalmijn 1991), age (van Poppel et al. 2001), training, battle, and faith (Blackwell and Lichter 2004). While there is increasing similarity in specific traits such as for example training and age over a few years (Schwartz and Mare 2005; Van de Putte et al. 2009), there was clearly a decrease in homogamy with regards to nation of birth through the rise of intermarriages between natives and immigrants in European countries. Footnote 1 Scholars usually learn immigrant–native intermarriage within the context of immigrant integration and regularly consider intermarriage once the step that is final the assimilation procedure (Gordon 1964). an extremely neglected element of this is certainly that “it takes two to tango”: it needs just as much willingness in the element of natives to intermarry since it does regarding the element of immigrants. This research addresses an interest which has had hitherto been understudied for the reason that it analyses the (inter-)marriage behavior of indigenous Swedes. Footnote 2 Focusing on the indigenous bulk expands the intermarriage literary works and contributes to a much better knowledge of societal openness towards minorities within the marriage market that is majority’s. The characteristics of both the native partner and the immigrant partner, this paper is an important contribution to the intermarriage literature by taking into account. Intermarriage is actually considered to signal the truth that various social teams consider the other person as equals (cf. Kalmijn 1991), but wedding can also replicate social hierarchies by excluding specific groups through the pool of prospective lovers and reproducing social structures within these. Where intermarriages show systematic habits of hypergamy and hypogamy, that is, indigenous lovers marry up or down in faculties such as for example age and training, it may be determined that the lovers try not to consider one another as social equals (Merton 1941). Intermarriage habits consequently have actually the possibility to show implicit hierarchies of immigrants within the wedding market. Footnote 3

The specific concern that this paper tries to response is whether intermarriages are linked to the status of native Swedes in adition to that of immigrants within the Swedish wedding market. This study contributes to a previously understudied area in the intermarriage literature by analysing the individual characteristics of natives that are associated with intermarriage as well as the educational- and age-assortative mating patterns of intermarried couples rather than the mere frequency of such unions. It makes use of register that is high-quality since the whole populace of residents in Sweden and includes all marriages and non-marital unions with typical young ones that have been created in the time 1991–2009.

Background and past Research on Immigrant–Native Intermarriages in European countries and Sweden

Intermarriage between immigrants and natives has increased in many countries that are european previous years and it is closely associated with the percentage of immigrants in the united states (Lanzieri 2012). This increase that is general intermarriage in European countries is essentially associated with a considerable boost in intermarriage with partners from nations outside of the EU (de Valk and Medrano 2014). Intermarriage prices in Sweden continuously have risen since the 1970s, together with enhance is notably steeper for males compared to females. Figure 1 shows the proportions of immigrant–native intermarriages (defined right right here as marriages between A swede that is native footnote and their foreign-born partner) and native–native marriages (thought as marriages between two indigenous spouses) of all of the newly contracted marriages created by indigenous Swedes from 1969 to 2009. At the time of 1991 the register extracts utilized in this paper have an identifier for non-marital cohabitations with typical young ones, rendering it feasible to report the stocks of native–native cohabitation and cohabitation that is immigrant–native.

Stocks of native–native unions and immigrant–native unions of all of the unions of indigenous men that are swedish feamales in Sweden 1969–2009

For indigenous ladies, the stocks of immigrant–native wedding and cohabitation are close in proportions and now have changed just marginally considering that the 1990s; for indigenous guys, there clearly was a wider space with immigrant–native cohabitation showing reduced prices with little to no enhance in the long run and immigrant–native marriages displaying greater prices with a far more pronounced enhance with time.

In previous years, intermarriage between indigenous Swedes and immigrants ended up hookupdate.net/spiritual-singles-review being dominated by intermarriage along with other Nordic residents, especially Finns (Cretser 1999). The increase in intermarriages can be largely accounted for by the increased number of marriages with partners from outside Europe, and Thailand has replaced Finland as the most frequent country of origin for intermarried immigrant women (although Finland remains the most common country of origin for intermarried immigrant men; Haandrikman 2014) in more recent years.