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Education and Intergenerational Social Mobility in Europe and the United States$
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Richard Breen and Walter Müller

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781503610163

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9781503610163.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM STANFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.stanford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Stanford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in SSO for personal use.date: 27 September 2021

Education as an Equalizing Force

Education as an Equalizing Force

How Declining Educational Inequality and Educational Expansion Have Contributed to More Social Fluidity in Germany

(p.122) Chapter Six Education as an Equalizing Force
Education and Intergenerational Social Mobility in Europe and the United States

Reinhard Pollak

Walter Müller

Stanford University Press

The chapter examines the role of education in social mobility among men and women in Germany during the twentieth century. It analyses two pathways of how a person’s social class origin affects her or his own class position: First, an education-mediated path, where a person’s social origin influences her or his educational attainment, which in turn influences the social class position she or he attains in adult life. Second, a path that comprises all the mechanisms not related to formal education by which social origins influence an adult’s social class position. Using data from various large-scale survey programs (ALLBUS, SOEP, NEPS), and based on log-linear modelling and decomposition methods, the chapter shows that in the long run social fluidity increased and that this is mainly associated with a decline in educational inequality and with an strong educational expansion for both men and women over the twentieth century.

Keywords:   social inequality, social mobility, social fluidity, education, social stratification, social class, gender, Germany

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