Marriage Migration and Inequality in India, 1983–2008

Author : Smriti Rao, Kade Finnoff | 2015
Published By: Population and Development Review

Using National Sample Survey data from 1983 to 2007–08, we investigate rising rates of female marriage migration in India. We find little evidence to support the idea that marriage migration is a form of disguised economic migration by women. We hypothesise that it is instead a result of the changing patterns of marriage by socioeconomic status. Regression analysis indicates that poor families are increasingly more likely to have brides who in-migrate, a finding that is robust across a sectoral disaggregation of marriage migration. We also find that urban inequality increases the likelihood of migration by intensifying class stratifications within urban India, increasing the need for poorer urban households to seek migrant brides. Marriage thus serves to reinforce rather than undermine larger patterns of class (and not just caste) inequality.

URL : http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1728-4457.2015.00069.x/full

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