Journal of Economic Perspectives: Vol. 4 No. 4 (Fall 1990)


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Family Change among Black Americans: What Do We Know?

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Ellwood, David T., and Jonathan Crane. 1990. "Family Change among Black Americans: What Do We Know?" Journal of Economic Perspectives, 4(4): 65-84.

DOI: 10.1257/jep.4.4.65


The changes in family structures of black American households over the past three decades have been remarkable. In 1960, 33 percent of black children were not living with two parents. By 1988, the figure had risen to 61 percent. During the same period, the fraction of all black children born to an unmarried mother rose from 23 percent to over 60 percent. This paper examines the patterns of family change, briefly discusses their economic implications, and explores what is known about the economic reasons for those changes.

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Ellwood, David T. (Harvard U)
Crane, Jonathan (U IL, Chicago)


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