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Salient Features of Vietnamese and Filipina Brides of American Citizens: Findings Based on the Micro Data of Recent American Community Surveys

September 5, 2012 Comments off

Salient Features of Vietnamese and Filipina Brides of American Citizens: Findings Based on the Micro Data of Recent American Community Surveys (PDF)

Source:  Journal of Population Studies
This paper studies the educational, employment, and income status of Vietnamese and Filipina brides of American citizens, based on the merged micro data of the 2005, 2006, and 2007 American Community Surveys. We found that the Vietnamese brides tended to be much less educated than the Filipina brides. This difference, together with the fact that the former tended to be much weaker in English language ability than the latter, contributed than did the Filipina brides, and (2) the finding that the economic niche of the employed Vietnamese brides (in the salon sector) tended to yield substantially lower wages than did the economic niche of the employed Filipina brides (in the medical service sector). Since better-educated brides had a better chance to get married to better-educated husbands, we naturally found that the husbands of the Vietnamese brides tended to be less educated than the husbands of the Filipina brides. However, the gap in educational attainment between the two groups of husbands was substantially smaller than the corresponding gap between the two groups of the brides. Underlying this gender difference was the fact that in addition to educational status, beauty and pleasant personality were also important criteria for selecting wives, and the possibility that beauty and pleasant personality were not positively correlated with educational status. With respect to household income, the gap between the two groups of brides was not large, partly because of the strong tendency of the Vietnamese brides toward hypergamy. A nice finding was that both Filipina and Vietnamese wives of American citizens were at rather low risk of being in poverty. The rather negative images of foreign brides in higher-income Asian countries conveyed by many ethnographic studies have been countered by our more sanguine finding about the Vietnamese and Filipina brides in the United States. With respect to the idea that women in lower-income countries tend to accept hypogamy at the personal level in order to achieve hypergamy at the societal level, it was moderately supported by the Filipina cases but largely negated by the Vietnamese cases.
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