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Conference papers

Matrilaterality and inequalities : the example of the French family support system

Abstract : The role of the family in producing inequalities is now an established focus of sociological study. While analysis of sex-related inequalities is a major component of these studies, researchers are much less likely to underscore the importance of the structural feature that tends to underlie the whole of our western kinship system: matrilaterality. The term refers to the fact that couples favor the maternal line over the paternal one in matters of family support. Few recent studies in France have attempted a systematic analysis of these mechanisms. This article uses data from an INSEE survey [Institut National de Statistique et des Etudes Economiques] of 6000 households on family relations to show how matrilaterality provides a different view of certain characteristic traits of the prevailing family support system in France. It is shown that the maternal line is preferred to a greater or lesser degree by individual’s social milieu and position within the family life cycle.
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Nicolas Jonas, Marie-Clémence Le Pape. Matrilaterality and inequalities : the example of the French family support system. Colloque de l'Association européenne de sociologie, Sep 2005, Torun, Poland. ⟨hal-03416119⟩



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