Role of Religiosity in the Lives of the Low-Income Population: A Comprehensive Review of the Evidence. Research Questions Guiding Empirical Studies


In general, the primary research questions about religiosity and marriage that guide empirical studies targeting economically disadvantaged groups parallel the studies of the general population. The empirical questions focus on how religious denomination and religiosity are associated with marriage, divorce, attitudes and expectations about marriage, and relationship quality. Few studies examine the potential mediators of the effect of religiosity and marriage and relationship outcomes. Other research is beginning to consider whether the effect of religiosity on the probability of marriage varies by race.

The studies focusing on the low-income population differ from studies that rely on population-level data by including diverse family structures (including couples who cohabit and unmarried parents). One study (Lichter & Carmalt, 2009) examines whether the effect of religiosity on marriage varies by high and low levels of material hardship.

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