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Marrying into the American Population: Pathways into Cross-Nativity Marriages



Cross-nativity marriages have been a neglected dimension of intermarriage patterns in the U.S., although they provide a vehicle for the easy social and political integration of the foreign-born spouse and the couple's children. We first present U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service data to show that cross-nativity marriages are common among migrants entering the country and appear to be increasing over time. The following analyses based on 2008 American Community Survey data imply several pathways into cross-nativity marriages that are strongly gendered and race specific and that involve major social institutions such as the higher educational system and the U.S. military.