Religion, Convention, and Paternal Involvement



Family scholarship has generally overlooked the influence that religion may have on paternal involvement. Accordingly, using longitudinal data taken from the National Survey of Families and Households, I examined the influence of religious affiliation and attendance on the involvement of residential fathers in one-on-one activities, dinner with their families, and youth activities and found religious effects for each of these three measures. Virtually no evidence was found for a competing hypothesis that these effects are artifacts of a conventional habitus such that the type of men who are more conventional in their patterns of civic engagement are both more religious and more involved with their children. However, civic engagement is positively related to paternal involvement.