This paper addresses the impact of COVID-19-induced uncertainty on union formation intentions in Italy. We acknowledge that decisions made in uncertain conditions rely on personal narratives of the future, that is socially-constructed contingent plans for achieving a personal imaginary. The data come from an on-line survey experiment carried out during the final week of lockdown in Italy on a sample of 1,846 individuals in a romantic relationship (cohabiting or living apart together). Our findings suggest that narratives of the future have a causal effect on marriage intentions: expectations of a long wait before the return to pre-pandemic conditions negatively influence marriage intentions. On the other hand, cohabitation seems more compatible with the uncertainties of today’s world. The present study gives a prominent role to the future in family formation practices, net of more ‘traditional’ factors that have been considered in the literature on family life courses.

Marriage and cohabitation under uncertainty: the role of narratives of the future during the COVID-19 pandemic / Guetto, Raffaele; Vignoli, Daniele; Bazzani, Giacomo. - In: EUROPEAN SOCIETIES. - ISSN 1461-6696. - ELETTRONICO. - 23:(2021), pp. 674-688. [10.1080/14616696.2020.1833359]

Marriage and cohabitation under uncertainty: the role of narratives of the future during the COVID-19 pandemic

Guetto, Raffaele;Vignoli, Daniele;Bazzani, Giacomo
2021

Abstract

This paper addresses the impact of COVID-19-induced uncertainty on union formation intentions in Italy. We acknowledge that decisions made in uncertain conditions rely on personal narratives of the future, that is socially-constructed contingent plans for achieving a personal imaginary. The data come from an on-line survey experiment carried out during the final week of lockdown in Italy on a sample of 1,846 individuals in a romantic relationship (cohabiting or living apart together). Our findings suggest that narratives of the future have a causal effect on marriage intentions: expectations of a long wait before the return to pre-pandemic conditions negatively influence marriage intentions. On the other hand, cohabitation seems more compatible with the uncertainties of today’s world. The present study gives a prominent role to the future in family formation practices, net of more ‘traditional’ factors that have been considered in the literature on family life courses.
2021
23
674
688
Goal 3: Good health and well-being for people
Goal 10: Reducing inequalities
Guetto, Raffaele; Vignoli, Daniele; Bazzani, Giacomo
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Utilizza questo identificatore per citare o creare un link a questa risorsa: https://hdl.handle.net/2158/1211064
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