The empirical study of individuals' life-course is one of the most promising areas of research within sociology today. Increased availability of large-scale longitudinal data and improved statistical methods have made it possible to address theoretically relevant questions about events such as entrance into the labour market, job mobility, divorce and death.
This book consists of studies capturing the life-course from the cradle to the grave. The research questions include long-term consequences of childhood conditions; family formation and school-careers; work and parental leave; gender discrimination in job promotion; divorce and occupational career; persistence in poverty; and the intriguing question of why the highly educated tend to survive everyone else.
The studies shed light on the relation between family and work, on gender inequality, social class differences, welfare state redistribution, and labour market processes. They do this in a particular context, namely Sweden in the post-war period that is, during the decades that formed one of the most advanced welfare states in modern history. One chapter provides a descriptive account of institutional and life-course change in Sweden during that period.
Most authors use the Swedish level-of-living surveys, a unique data set providing ample opportunity to study social processes in a longitudinal perspective. The book will, therefore, be of relevance to those with interests in the Swedish welfare state as well as those with theoretical and reseacrh interests in the reproduction of inequality
Table of Contents
1 Towards a post-Fordist life-course regime? Generational changes in transitions and volatility 2 The long shadow of socioeconomic conditions in childhood: do they affect class inequalities in mortality? 3 Family formation and participation in higher education: crosscutting life events? 4 Giving birth without giving up: return to employment and return to work amongst women 5 The sooner the better? Parental leave duration and women’s occupational career 6 Divorce and labour-market outcomes: do women suffer or gain? 7 Gendered promotion processes in the labour market: do inequalities accrue or attenuate? 8 What you see is not always what you get: imperfect information in the job-worker matching process, and its consequences for the attainment of occupational prestige 9 Household income dynamics: mobility out of and into low income over the life-course 10 Why do graduates live longer? Education, occupation, family and mortality during the 1990s 11 The Swedish Level-of-Living Surveys: a general overview and description of the event history data
Jan O. Jonsson is Professor of Sociology at the Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University. Colin Mills is a Senior Lecturer at the London School of Economics and Political Science.