Turkish migrants differ in their fertility and marriage behavior from native Germans. These differences, especially those concerning the link between the two events birth of the first child and first marriage, will be examined in this article by using event history analysis with data of the Generations and Gender Survey from 2005 (main survey) and 2006 (additional survey of Turkish nationals). We address the question to what extent the link between first marriage and starting a family differs between these two groups and if the differences are accounted for by religious or educational differences. The key findings are: Germans often marry between getting pregnant and getting their first child. Turks, however, predominantly get pregnant within marriage. Turkish women who get pregnant before marriage have subsequently worse prospects on the marriage market. These differences are not accounted for by religious and educational differences. It can be assumed, however, that differences between Islam and Christianity are relevant.
Buber, Isabella and Panova, Ralina and Dorbritz, Jurgen
Over the past several decades, childbearing within cohabitation has increased throughout Europe. This changing behavior may indicate that cohabitation is becoming an “alternative to marriage;” however, pregnancy and birth may also prompt changes in union status. Using union and fertility histories from 11 countries, we employ life-tables to analyze the intersection between union status and childbearing. With data extending back to the 1970s, we investigate how this relationship has changed over time. We examine whether cohabiting unions with children are more likely to be converted to marriage or dissolve and examine union transitions for women who were single at conception or birth. We find that patterns of union status and childbearing develop along different trajectories depending on the country. Despite widespread claims that marriage is disappearing in Europe, our findings suggest that marriage still remains the predominant institution for raising a family.